Life happens outside my window and sometimes I shut it out.
Sometimes I watch from obscurity. No one knows I’m here… or may be they do and don’t care. I watch them any way.
The man across the street, the one who lost his wife to brain cancer two weeks ago, or has it been three? Any ways, he sits out there on his patio on his bench some evenings and drinks a beer. I wonder what he’s thinking or if he’s out there trying to forget.
I imagine his two young children are tucked in their beds asleep, finally and he breathes a sigh of relief that he made it through one more day. It’s one more day moving in the opposite direction of his wife’s death. He’s moving on even if he didn’t want to.
Perhaps he wonders how he will keep the memory of their mother alive so they won’t forget. They are so young they probably will forget and that’s where the pain resides only to be resurrected every time they cry out for her; every time they don’t understand why she isn’t coming home. How can death be tangible to them? She closed her eyes. That was it.
May be when they cry their pain is too horrible for him to bear because he cannot fix it. He cannot stop it and oh, how God he wished he could because then that would mean he would no longer feel that pain of her absence. They could all heal and move on. May be because he can’t fix that pain he becomes angry, not really at them, though they are the source of the flow, but angry because he is helpless… angry because he can’t drown their sorrow with his beer.
It is a tender time in that household. My heart sinks when I glance in that direction and I don’t happen to glance… no, I look. I look on purpose because the sorrow is so great. My fear is being realized just a few houses in front of me. So, when my heart sinks I pray to God He sends His spirit of peace in that household. I pray for the father that God will send His Comforter and speak to him in ways that only that father will know it is God Himself holding him as he falls apart in His able arms.
Surround him in peace. Heal him. Protect his children. Draw them closer to Your side oh, Lord.
There are times when I look and that man across the street is surrounded by his family and friends and they’re grilling. They’re laughing … he’s laughing and I thank God.