Beloved fed me oatmeal on this frigid morning, rich with raisins and cinnamon and topped with maple syrup.
Love takes many forms—oatmeal is one—but the love itself is the fundamental nourishment we all crave. Nothing warms us more thoroughly.
We ran outside several times last night, me bundled up and Beloved in his fuzzy robe and a knit cap, hurrying back in to escape the icy cold, but amazed by the sight of the earth’s shadow slowly creeping across that full moon. We stood alone in our darkened yard staring up, the wind blowing gently, the silence profound. Utter peace. I am amazed to think millions of other folks watched it, each in their own space and circumstance. We aren’t alone on this little planet.
The news this morning, however, thoroughly dampened last night’s peace. It had the usual collection of ugly stories about the strident divisions tearing people apart. We live in ugly times. One of the ugliest was a correction (ore perhaps additional facts) about the story of Native American activist Nathan Philips and the boys at the Lincoln Memorial. It appears they did not surround him initially; he approached them in an effort to put himself and his prayers between the boys and another group, both sides shouting ugly things at each other. The memories of all parties differ or so they say, but no credit to any of them, except Mr. Philips. All three groups, sadly, were there for some ostensible religious testimony. God cries.
I thought of Martin Luther King this morning. No one spoke more eloquently about the things that divide us and the need to refuse to let them. “Love,” he said, “is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.”
When I get angry I try to remember, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” It is hard to write stories about coming together, overcoming differences, and love with a heavy heart, but I’m getting to it. It doesn’t feel like much but it’s what I do. But first, coffee.