Perfume and spices on the air as I wait in the string-lighted courtyard of our final banquet dinner. There are fires burning in the metal stand welcoming street strays. The smoke in my clothes and tearing eyes might as well be from sycamore limbs back home in Missouri. My heart is full and oh-so heavy knowing I might not see my new friends ever again. Wishing farewells and whispering fevered fantasies about moving across the globe to adopt new customs, cuisines and children. This could be my home. My heart is a gypsy. A Native American warrior heart nomadic as a tornado.
My heart so fragile. Powerful. Chaotic. Ready to rope out and lose its whirl at any moment. Yet overeager to jump and pump arteries-first into strange territory of emotion and relationship.
What to do with all this feeling? Love? Raw force of nature?
I love this country. I love these people.
Purple Balloon Boy.
Yellow Chair Girl.
I hope to share eternity with you, Friends. Stay with God and send Him with me and we shall meet again on different, distant shores. Still bright and glistening.
I saw a young girl in a hot-pink jacket take her first steps with the help of a pediatric walker. She strolled straight through our hearts with smiles and laughter into the outstretched hands of her own mother’s love. I got to see what love can do.
Physical therapists seating kids who need wheelchairs. Nurses treating gunshot wounds. Kind people ready to laugh and bring joy, handing out glasses.
Make the sick well. Give sight to the blind. Bind wounds. And make the lame walk to mother’s waiting arms. Miracles. In the land where Jesus walked.
Love did that. Love changed their world. My world. THE world.
“For God so loved the world…”
Please let me see this place again. Please let me feel this love again. This beautiful lump in my throat. Jumping unrestrained from my lashes. Down my cheeks in rolling, fat tears.
Don’t let me pass from this valley without your love, God.
How do I take this with me?