My last post wasn't really about gardening, so I hope the title didn't scare anyone away.
What I was really trying to write about, find my way to, was mercy.
And here I am again, learning mercy.
A primary definition of mercy is to show compassion or leniency.
It's also a blessing as a divine favor.
Or compassion shown to those in distress.
Augustine said that mercy is: "ever ancient, ever new."
And the Bible's authors back up these understandings of mercy:
Psalm 40:11: LORD, don't hold back your tender mercies from me. Let your unfailing love and faithfulness always protect me.
Lamentations 3:22&23: The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.
We can't find work.
We being, primarily, my husband.
In this economy, that isn't a surprise.
But such understanding doesn't make the burden any lighter.
Or the toll it takes on one's spirit or self worth easier.
We knew, when we decided to move to the states from Romania, that this would not be an easy road to walk.
But, we had walked difficult roads before.
And, having worked among our friends who were poor, we thought we understood mercy.
I'm not sure we knew, though, how much we would need it.
I was talking to a friend the other day and she said that she'd been talking to her husband about this sort of a slump they found themselves in...just a general malaise that they were feeling.
She said she thought a lot of it had to do with the struggle just to make ends meet and that we, our generation, didn't really know what that meant until now.
And that can be depressing.
Feeling the noose of no extra money is a tight place to be.
It made me think of the 'extras' that we do have...maybe even tiny pieces of mercy, benevolence, compassion that make what can be bought with money worthless.
I'm not saying that I wouldn't love a job. I'm not even saying that it wouldn't be nice to have our own place or buy a second car or a new outfit.
I'm just realizing that true mercies are what truly make life worth living.
Today, these are my mercies as I see them:
~a cool evening breeze in summmer.
~mountains still standing tall and glorious.
~groves of orange trees
~my husband's hand
~my baby's sigh
~my sister's call
~dinner with friends
~remembering: He is closer than the air I breathe.
My next several posts will be about mercy and peace in the midst of so much living.