Universe

Planet Earth is suspended just where it should be in the universe. Within this little world, clouds form in the atmosphere, darkening until they must release what was never theirs to keep. Where man lives, the soil drinks, and where man toils, the soil gives. A vine creeps up, and one day, humans hands come to pluck the fruit and bleed it into wine. Wheat blankets the land, growing golden at harvest—as golden as the bread it will become. When the bread and wine are placed on an altar and offered to Heaven . . . He who created the universe emerges. And I am finally coming to understood how magnificent this miracle truly is.

Surrounded by at least fifteen other young women, I knelt before the exposed Eucharist in a small but beautiful Adoration chapel, and we sang to Him in the night. Princesses adoring their King. I sensed that as we were captivated by Him, He was captivated by us. While everything else seems to be spinning into chaos, departing from its true purpose, there we were, suspended just where we should be in the universe.

Kindred Spirits

I asked God to give me at least one kindred spirit here on the island. Well, I’ve discovered something “kindred” in at least four young adults already—and unexpectedly in a blue-eyed, flaxen-haired girl. Our connection? Horses. Again and again God floors me with His blessings. Who am I that He would go all out? I am loved, that is all I know.

Today I snowshoed with two of my new friends. Ducking under snow-crusted evergreen boughs, chucking snowballs, gasping at the orange blaze of a fox, we wound our way through a tranquil treed segment in Charlottetown. Decked only in sweaters and light gloves, we found the blue day a perfect beginning to spring, often throwing our heads back to sigh in delight. I’ve been told, however, that it is the calm before the storm—as it is before every storm on this island. Consolation before desolation. Ah, well, enjoy the calm while it lasts, and then break out the hot drinks when the ice crystals descend to gust against the window panes. The approaching storm has not yet arrived, but soon. And I doubt it is the last.

We are all aching to know summer again—but I confess I do not mind having dropped into this faraway world while it is overflowing with snow. Because it means I will journey with these people from season to season, as the snow recedes, as the mud forms, as the grass grows green, as the flowers peep forth. And when we find ourselves skipping on a beach for the first time, we will share and understand each other’s joy.

Storm Beyond, Fire Within

A friend called me a chameleon at heart, and I think I may be, because already I feel comfortable in this home, with this family. They are good souls, very kind to me, down to the youngest with her pigtails and thoughtful chocolate-brown eyes. We’ve laughed together, prayed and sung together, traded recipes and stories. I imagine they will begin to feel like my own kin as the weeks pass.

It is a charming, light-filled home, and I love the sanctuary that is my bedroom, but how I wish to venture beyond these walls into the woods. And yet storm upon storm has buried the island in snow, and my boots are only shin-high. If my suitcase were bigger, I would have packed the clothing required to head out into the blustering snow and romp with the little ones. As it is, I must await the melt that will come—I await wildflowers. I am told we will be on the beaches in sweaters as soon as possible.

Until then, I play with the children, help them with their school, sweep the floor, change the baby’s diaper, read by the wood-stove, and do whatever else is necessary in the moment. Sometimes this involves brewing coffee.

Nests

For a few desperate moments, I was an eaglet, safe in the dark beneath their wings. What am I, that I cling to the nest, even as my lungs burn to taste the air above the peaks?

I am young. Time will one day see me clutching my own child in my arms, crying into her hair. Until then, I am building my own nest. And the first twigs have been found not in some distant land, but have been given to me from home. They are the tears that say I love you, and so I let you go.

Deep Snow

Woah. Once again, this season at home is over and I am leaving behind the familiar to set out into the unknown. I look at Islander and I am sad to let him go. But even though our time together was short, I know it was meant to be. I guess that’s what I’m learning about life: no season lasts. Something in me wants this season to carry on a while longer—this time spent learning to speak Islander’s language, playing boardgames with my brothers, going on dates with Dad and to horse clinics with Mom—but, like the trees and their leaves that fall, I do not control the tides of my destiny.

I’ll be honest, I feel little. I am leaving to live in a place where I know no one, to give my whole self to strangers . . . even as I know I have absolutely nothing to give them. But this is good. Good because in my littleness I must run to He who is big. And Abba has everything to give.

Into deep snow I plunge (literally), but also into a new beginning. Spring is coming.