...that what makes us vulnerable makes us beautiful to God and dangerous to the enemy." I've been wrestling with this sentence since I read it.
Vulnerable. Beautiful. Dangerous.
We are so vulnerable. Terry's immune system. Our hearts toward one another and to the words and deeds of others. Our ears to the very still, quiet Voice.
There is much beauty. Terry's determination to finish treatment well, his will to serve others each day, his patience in significant pain. Our kids and their quiet attention. Our friends and their varicolored care. Our families and the ways their love is expressed. I think I am seeing glimpses of what God sees in people. The fellowship of suffering is beautiful.
Terry's weakness is dangerous - I see it in his eyes, I watch it come alive in his actions. I wouldn't mess with him if I had a motive less than pure these days. Not that he would hurt you, but looking closely at who he is will stop you in your tracks. I try not to be, but I am a little dangerous in much less effective ways. I implore strangers in smoking areas to stop. I resolutely ask socially awkward questions. I beg friends to not abuse substances or themselves. I find myself pressing those I love toward wholeness - hard.
But words are regularly more illusive. I don't really have any for the girl with the multi-pierced face and the multi-sliced arms in the yogurt shop. None for the guy in the time slot before Terry at radiation who comes out looking more not-real than real. Zero for the car repair guy who tells me about his wife's breast cancer. Nothing when a friend cries over his daughter's anorexia. All my words seem under the enforced and captive teaching of this season - instead I find myself hugging and patting. And in ever-present empathetic tears.
You can laugh, if you know me well. Me without words IS funny. But you had better be careful as well - because I am also less afraid and more dangerous to that which is not true. It's possible I might hug you or I might say to you what I haven't before because I now see you more clearly in your vulnerability and in your beauty. You and your story are powerful and too needed to not be acknowledged. You are even more precious and I love you even more.
One more chemo - Monday. Five more radiation days - Monday through Friday. Friday is Terry's birthday. The light at the end of the tunnel is growing larger. Please continue to pray for Terry in these last treatment days.
God is good and faithful.