March 02, 2012

"Slow Dancing in a Burning Room"

John Mayer's song title (though not the song, so much), could be the alternate title of my blog.  "Slow Dancing in a Burning Room" is basically how the psalmist describes life when he writes, in chapter 39,
4 “Show me, L0RD, my life’s end
   and the number of my days;
   let me know how fleeting my life is.
5 You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
   the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure."(NIV)

What then should we do? (since the room is burning and all)  Should we jump from the window?  I've halfway considered it.  Should we crouch in the corner and cry?  I've done it.  Or (to be cliche) should we dance? 

Daniel and I had a rare midday conversation today.  He admitted that he spends too much time forgetting, and not enough time remembering, that he is living his dream.  When the local people and their Eastern ways drive him crazy, and when he calls his sister 20 times on her birthday and he can't get through, and when the washing machine suddenly crushes its own legs because it was made too cheaply, his life doesn't seem to him much like a dream.

I can relate completely.  When I have to start wearing a whistle around my neck to maintain order in my own home (yes, its true), and when I burn the granola because my oven won't work below 200 degrees Celsius, and when my new daughter tries to hurt my feelings because she suddenly realizes she can, my life doesn't seem to me much like a dream.

And while he is forgetting, Daniel dreams of a "normal" life.  And while I am forgetting, I dream of a quiet life.  And we dream of simple dinners with friends and being able to complete an entire sentence without being interrupted with, "Hullooooo, you from the America?" or "Mommyyyyyyyyyy, I have to poop."

And he and I forget that all we ever wanted to do in life was woo aching hearts to their Redeemer (and get pregnant a few times in a row and settle into the business of making sweet memories with our children to the gory of G0D).

But instead of living our dreams, we focus on the flames, and the fact that life pretty much sucks, and the fact that all of this is wasting away anyhow.  And we grumble and we displace and we eat chocolate and we snap at the ones we love the most.
I want to be different than that.  I want to be like my sister-in-law, who made sure that her daughter learned to sit up and play with toys and put weight on her legs.  Because really, we are all dying, are we not?  We are all "going down," as John Mayer sings, and everyone is "but a breath," as the psalmist says, and if none of us ever picked up a guitar or an ink pen or a rolling pin or a good book - if none of us held our children close or winked at our husbands or emailed a friend who came to mind in the night - then what in the world are we doing here? 

What was Glory doing in the hospital all those months?  Was she dying?  I say, "No."  She was living.

She was dancing.