This morning Facebook served up a memory from nine years ago:
Quote of the Day from poet Carl Sandberg: ” A baby is God’s opinion that the world should go on.”September 29, 2011
We were less than three months from welcoming Lily into the world at the time. Today we are almost certainly within two weeks of welcoming our first grandchild. “Baby Boombastic,” as Brendan and Becky’s baby has been affectionately nicknamed by his or her youngest uncle Ben, could emerge any moment, and not a moment too soon.
Oma and Dziadzi cannot wait to meet you, little one.
This past weekend we were blessed to celebrate the wedding of our eldest Engeldaughter, Kate, to her own beloved Brendan (not ours). Jodi and I were the host couple, as Mike and Stacy had been for us last winter—essentially managing the details so the parents of the bride and groom could absorb the graces of the day. It was a great joy to be able to serve our extended family in this way, and for a guy like me, who easily slips into introspection, these duties forced me to raise my gaze and watch the celebration unfold.
I saw so many little things that caused my breath to catch in my throat: My newest daughter, Becky, her belly impossibly round, hustling around the church to get the perfect photograph. Becky’s folks and family traveling three hours to serve the meal at the reception for a family they only met last December at Bren and Becky’s wedding. Our eldest son speaking to his youngest sister-in-law and eliciting a wide grin from her tired face, then swing-dancing with her behind the serving counter. The Miller clan’s fierce, tight-knit love of each other, and now, of Kate and the Engels. Gabe’s and Trevor’s tireless service. Kate’s beaming, beautiful face, and her groom’s easy confidence in the wisdom of his choice. Livi’s joyous dancing, Emma’s open laugh, Bethy’s sweet smile. Peter, mohawked and untucked, looking like the front man for an Irish punk band and praying like a deacon. Lily, learning to be a girly-girl from the young women, and exploring the outdoors with boys and farmgirls. My bride, dancing close to me and cuddling our godbaby Levi.
After a few glasses of good Scottish ale, this was my thought: In the face of everything—coronvirus, racial unrest, electioneering, division and deception—life goes on. God continues to pour out His love in superabundance upon our world. Most of the time it just runs off, washing over us and out to the rest of Creation, which waxes and wanes as it always has while we bicker and grasp.
But once in a while we stop, open ourselves, and soak it in—that divine life of grace that He offers everywhere, all the time, the fruits of which are peace, joy and love.
This weekend was one such time. We were so blessed to be a part of it.