Looking for love….
Over the past several months I have been overtly, actively looking for love. It’s been a rough few months and I’ve needed to seek out the love. And as they say…Love is all around! I’ve found it in unexpected places…..
Along a fence in Swaziland, it was growing at this crèche
In the face and song of this young boy at a daycare center
At the MCC retreat centre in this garden reminder of peace
Inside the old cells of the prison where we live in Pietermaritzburg in the form of art
Sweet kitties who have befriended us
Rainbows that give us hope for a new day
Advent Hope with summer flowers
It’s there, it’s all around us, but we just have to see it. Where do you find it? Where do you seek it? Do you recognize it in the ordinary, in the mundane? In the everyday routines of life, we can tend to get so caught up that we lose sight of love. In the horrors on the news, in the tornadoes and storms, in the poverty and sickness and in the trials, we tend to readily pick up on all the bad, the negative, the hard stuff. That’s the easy part. The hard work is finding the love….why is that?
The last couple of months we have had 3 of our parents in the hospital. And it’s hard to be away from home….one worries without knowing all the details, there’s nothing we can actually do and the unknown is blinding. Work has been difficult. It’s new, there’s a huge learning curve, some days a bit overwhelming and it has been all consuming at this time of year. Jon had a major medical scare. He has a huge blood clot in his leg and small pieces broke off and moved into his lungs. He was in the hospital for 4 days and is on a long road to full recovery. So it has been a hectic few months back in South Africa!
However, we’ve been looking for the love! We have had such wonderful support from so many all around us in the new community we are building. A great working team within MCC, random visits from friends old and new, wonderful children who have pitched in to do chores and nursing duties, blessings of technology with Skype and Whatsapp, and good medical care. We could choose to focus on all the bad, but the truth is there is just too much goodness to ignore. The beauty of rainbows, of friends, of reminders of God’s presence with us, Emmanuel, is just too good to ignore!
And Advent was an appropriate time of waiting with and on God for us this year. We were so grateful for Jon to be alive and with us, yet we wait for his full healing. We were waiting and waiting for this holiday to get here so we could have a reprieve – a time to stop and heal, to refresh, to be together as family and to be with our great, great friends (the Couper-Valiquettes’ in Durban). We were waiting on news of our parents…for healing and hope to be in the midst of their health concerns. And it arrived! Jon is healing, our parents are home and the holidays are upon us. We have had a beautiful few days of rest, of celebration and fun. It’s often times the darkness that reveals the light and the love, is it not?
It is my prayer that in 2016 love will reveal herself to us and that peace will prevail in these days of brokenness. May love, peace, hope and joy find you and yours! Keep looking for the love….