Sunday, March 20, 2011

The First Tears.

A friend of mine posted this story on her blog, and it spoke to me:

"Kathy told me once of the rock she held in her hand, she held it so tightly that her palm began to sweat and her fingers began to shake and then, it came to nothing because when she opened up her hand the rock still sat there, quietly

without her tight grip, she could surely loose it easier she thought, she felt 
and maybe it is true, but if we must hold something to tightly
then maybe it was never ours to keep in the first place"

The first tears over our eventual for departure from this country to another, 9000 miles away country, have fallen.  Because despite the certainty and excitement that we feel over the next season of our lives, it's still a tall order to fill, friends.

The first tears were my own.  Which seems appropriate.  They fell at the senior high retreat.  Watching some of our freshman boys be silly (and annoying, if I'm being quite honest) evoked them to fall.  In the midst of silly games and hanging out, the knowledge that next year they will be going on a retreat with another youth leader, playing different games, and learning more about God from someone else struck me deeply.

So deeply that, unexpectedly, tears came.

Being caught off guard, my only option was, of course, to immediately run out of the room before anyone could notice my eyes.  (Because everyone knows that the explanation of tears encourages even more tears).  I found an empty room in the building, sat on the empty bunk bed, and I surrendered to the only One worth surrendering to.  I sat with tears falling openly, unashamedly, feeling the first pains of departure and I allowed myself to feel them for the first time.  I once again gave back to God what He faithfully entrusted to me, to us, for the last 4 years.  What was never fully mine, to begin with: The hearts of these teens I love.  I want to witness, first hand, as they learn to live for something greater than themselves.  I want to see them grow and change and learn to love others with my own eyes.  Theirs are hearts and lives that I want to hold on to tightly...

So I let the tears fall and I reminded God how hard what He is asking of me is going to be.  and I asked the Faithful One to be faithful and to show me how to loosen my grip.  I re-committed myself to the calling and I re-committed myself to the One who called.  After allowing myself to feel the feelings that came so suddenly, I dried my eyes, wiped my mascara, rejoined the retreaters and no one knew what  had just taken place. What I had just let go of. Or what I had just clung to.

The second tears came from my best friend.  Tonight.  They came suddenly and unexpectedly and oh how they came quickly.  In a passing comment about spending more time together this summer, they seized her.  (and everyone knows that among best friends, tears are contagious. Highly contagious, in fact.)  Not ready to let go of that, of her, yet, I quickly ran and gave her a hug and we allowed ourselves the freedom to change the subject.  A freedom that, one day, will be gone and we will have to face the intruder-tears and let them fall again.  and again.  and again.

But not tonight...  Not tonight.


  1. I AM NOT ANONYMOUS!!! I will eventually figure this out.... :-)

  2. I love you beautiful, wonderful, amazing, loving daughter. I get it.

  3. Leslie:

    Letting go, I must say is the hardest thing to do. A quote that I hold close to my heart is what Corrie Ten Boom said. "Hold everything in your hands lightly, otherwise it hurts when God pries your fingers open".
    It will be hard but God has such blessings awaiting for you and for us because of your faithfulness to Him. Love you and praying for you.

  4. Annndd now I'm crying. Love you, friend.