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Year Two, Day 298: Death and Unconditional Love

I felt like I had a hangover today.

No, I didn't tip the bottle last night. I really don't drink anymore. Only the occasional glass of wine with a friend. 

I think I had a socializing hangover.  Today, I felt the need to find a nice place to sit with a book and a cup of tea. All day.

But, I still had things. Many things to clear out of the old place.

And I really wanted to make it to church.

Of course, as usual I am glad I did.  The little church I go to feeds my soul.  The pastor translates the bible, sometimes word for word. He has studied ancient languages, particularly Greek and Hebrew. I take notes furiously. I feel like I am back in college. I so love being a student!

He and his wife are amazing. Both in the 70's. Lift weights several times a week. Have energy that put me to shame! But he had been hospitalized due to heart complications for the past few weeks.

He was back preaching again today. He seemed a little tired, but fascinating as usual. With his recent hospitalization, I am realizing how deeply he has impacted my spiritual life. And how much he would be missed when he eventually departs this world.

I was thinking about death today.  Perhaps because of the pastor's illness. Or perhaps it was because of my social hung over.  Or maybe it was because I just started Week 10 of the daily devotional I have been reading:  Challenge: A Daily Meditation Program Based on "The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius"

I am proud of myself for sticking with this daily reading. Along with my daily bible reading, morning prayer and prayer journaling.  I find that it feeds my soul.  I need it even more than a morning jolt of caffeine!

The heading for week 10 is: "How Does the Thought of Death Impact the Way I Live?"

There was a lot of good food for thought in today's reading including a quote by Robert Herhold:

"It's too bad that dying is the last thing we do because it could teach us so much about life".

I read that at lunch after church. I have to admit, I was a bit down today.  During the break at church one of the elders came and asked about my son. I had asked the members to put him on the prayer chain back in the summer.  I always worry about my son.  I told the elder that I still worry about him.  Then I thought about our last lunch. He told me that I still treat him like a child. And he at 24 years old is a grown man, he says.

I sat there thinking about my son during the last part of church. I didn't hear much of the sermon. I even shed a few tears.  I ended up writing the elder a note. I thanked him for asking about my son. But I asked him to take his name off of the prayer sheet.  They have a sheet every week with names of people with prayer requests. My son's name is there with "personal issues" beside his name.

I realized that was not respecting his wishes to be treated like an adult. He did not ask for prayers.

I will still pray for him. I asked the church to pray for me. But I do need to love and accept him where he is at. I tend to judge him and his friends. I am certain he can feel my disapproval. And that is not really who I am. At least not to most of the world. Only to my son.

And I do understand what it feels like when we sense someone does not approve of us. Especially if that is a person who we love.

And speaking of death, we do not know how long we have on this earth. Nor do we know how long our loved ones will be here.

I want my son to know I love him. With no strings attached.

After church I called him. He was at work. I told him I just called to say hi and I loved him.  He said "Love you too" and hung up.

But later this afternoon he called out of the blue. He was going to pay rent with his girlfriend. He sounded happy. He asked me what I was up to. We just visited. I didn't nag or interrogate.  He didn't ask for anything. But we talked about having dinner later in the week. I told him I would like to meet his girlfriend.

We said "love you" and hung up.

That is the best interaction I've had with my son in a long time. 

There is so much more I'd like to say. But this was a profound moment for me, so I will leave it there.

I like leaving with profundity.

Happy Sunday! :)

Talk to you tomorrow!

Zita :)

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