Wade walked right by us with his friends reaching out to his dad as if to punch him and then rejoined his peers marching toward the stage. Before he left, I kissed his hand, looked him in the eyes and reminded myself I could not weigh him down by making him the sole center of my world or holding him so close as if to mitigate the danger.
The lines for the words of the worship song we sang scratched against scar tissue:
"So what could I say?
and what could I do?
But offer this heart, Oh God, completely to you."
As the students lined the proscenium, seven and eight students deep, a projection of Christ on the cross adorned the walls above them portraying a stain-glassed image of sacrifice.
Tom, our minister, apologized for having to deliver a hard message, and then he began to tell us about the hardships and persecution Christians today suffer and will continue to suffer. He said what many of us have already learned; there will be suffering. And then he challenged us or rather reminded us that we are commissioned to serve anyway.
My long time friend, Dana, posted the blog entry from February 21st on her Facebook page Saturday morning and offered loving words of praise I do not deserve. My actions and words from the night before still convicting me.
I didn't realize how angry I am, still, until Friday night. I am a part and participant in the selfishness of this world and certainly not above it in any way.
When I sang the words written above, I thought of Wade's heart and relinquishing the fear I have about being away from him for a week. Then, I thought of my own heart and how I hold it close these days - hiding behind the words regardless of how true I feel they are --- I don't have the energy to share.
Tom ended his message reminding us to be the light in the world. The words seem heavier than the ones I hash-tagged at the end of my Facebook posts about the little girl who shared her light effervescently. Nevertheless, it's what we have been commissioned to do.
"but what can I say, what can I do but offer my heart, oh God, completely to you."