A 2020 kind of love
That's my baby, my youngest, Jeremiah. A couple of weeks ago, he was asked to be a pallbearer for a man he dearly loved. Jeremiah was a little concerned about the logistics of being a pallbearer. How many others would be there to help him? How heavy would it be? Was he strong enough to carry his portion? What if he messed up? As time grew closer to the funeral, his concern grew into worry, which grew into anxiety. I wasn't sure what to do. You can't call the family the night before the funeral and say, "Hey, thanks for asking but Jeremiah's gonna pass. Hope you can replace him." We talked it through and assured him he was plenty strong enough and would do a good job. He didn't seem convinced, but he wanted to do this for a sweet couple who had been like another set of grandparents for my kids. The morning of the funeral, Jeremiah put on his brave face. Once at the church, he began pacing, and I began muttering prayers that Jeremiah would calm down. After the funeral, we left for the cemetery, where Jeremiah would help reverently carry this man to his final resting place. When it was all over, and we were driving home, Jeremiah said, "I'm so glad I did that for my friend. That was the very last thing I could give him. I think he would have been proud of me. I'm stronger than I thought I was." Then he kissed his biceps because he's a 14-year-old boy. I've thought about this and how love requires those things. Love requires bravery and strength, and perseverance. Love in 2020 requires double portions of those attributes. And therein lies the beauty of this difficult year. I think if this year has taught us anything, it's that we are braver than we think we are, stronger than we think we are (I'll pause for you to kiss your biceps), and more persistent than we think we are. Let's spend the remainder of this year looking for evidence of love. Maybe it's in the beauty of a sunset or the laugh of a baby. Maybe it's in a card you receive in the mail or the companionship of a dog that loves you endlessly. Regardless, look for it and find it. It's there because you are loved. I promise. *Please note, I did not whip out my phone at the graveside and take this picture. The family hired a photographer and sent me this photo.
"Do things for people not because of who they are or what they do in return, but because of who you are." ~Mother Teresa