Evelynn and I went for a walk at sunset last night. It’s been such a wet, cold, grey winter – okay, a typical winter – and the sun was shining so after supper, when everyone else went to the local hockey game, I galloped her into her hand-me-down quilted coat and headed for the outdoors at a dead run. I like to think I’m not that affected by the weather, surely I’m too mature for that business, but sure enough, the sun comes out and I’m all SUNSHINE! CUPCAKES! UNICORNS! RAINBOWS! HAPPINESS! I LOVE THE WORLD!

We walked up the hill and the mountains to the north were mist-shrouded, ghostly in the distance with winter snow still clinging to the pine trees. The sun was shining on the patchwork of damp, soggy fields below the ridge, and I wore my sunglasses, they were at the very bottom of my gigantic diaper bag and I had to scrounge through squished cereal bars and dried out wipies for them. There was the snap of temperamental spring in the air, a bit cold, a bit warm, a sweater sufficient in the daytime but by night, parkas are back on. As the sun set, we could see our breath in the dim. A misty cool blue sky ringed by growing navy blue and how did I miss the purple of sunset here in the north.

We went to the market at the top of hill and I bought the Oprah Magazine as a treat, it’s my one weakness. Then we walked down the Discovery Trail that goes through all of the neighbourhoods of the city and I stood there, at the ridge, breathing deep of the truth that I am really, truly happy, full of joy even, still. It’s more than the fact that Brian is done with school and home with us again, more than circumstances aligned, more than footie jammies and Golden Books.

It’s been a few years now, and you all know it’s been intentional, a battle sometimes, all on purpose. It’s been a journey to learn to see God in the moments, to know bone-deep that He is enough, and I am enough, and all of this life and living is so much more than enough. It’s made me fearless, bold, secure in His love, it’s made me joyful, it’s made me want to weep with gratitude when I walk the four blocks up our neighbourhood hill because, God, the world is just so beautiful and I can hardly breathe for the wonder.

Do you see that thin man up there, his khaki pants baggy on his legs, he’s walking and reading a book at the same time. Evelynn’s little hands are holding onto the tray of her stroller and I could drop to my knees in thankfulness for dimples at the base of fingers, for buds on the trees, for the coming of spring, for the first crocus of the season, for friends that live just down that street there, for pine trees and rough hewn fence lines.

Sometimes it’s the way that the light falls across the fields, no cathedral has moved me like this northern night in early spring. I’m in my temple, I know, and every thought, every bit of this noticing, this discipline of being here, right now, living my life while it’s happening, feels like the most pure-hearted prayer I’ve ever spoken out loud.

Other times it’s just Evelynn’s blue eyes, full of untaught wisdom, gazing steadily at me, unafraid, a life that exists because of love and I simply believe in God, in Love, all over again.

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In which I have an Evangelical Hero Complex
In which God has restored church to me
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