“I know who you are,” I whisper to my blond curly headed sister and squeeze her shoulders tight. Her eyes water and I pray the words bounce around the cavern of her body and stick deep into her heart. She’s amazing and I know it, but she forgets.
She is nannying right now, gets paid well and is darn good at it. She has that knack of bringing dignity and hope to each human being she spends time with. She gazes into their eyes until they reflect the shine in hers.
But, she has a God-sized dream aching in her soul to bring dignity and jobs to the broken-dreamed women of Mali, the women she danced with that first January when she was hungry for a new vision of life. They adopted her, sang over her and she can never forget them. They haunt her every time her lids close though the map back to them is now covered with a sheet of fog. Still, she prays and her heart weeps for them as she takes care of those precious children.
She is daughter of the Most High, chief courage-giver to the world, beauty dancer and best of all? She wears glasses that can transform the most ordinary of us downcast girls into royalty at any local TJ Maxx.
She has perseverance piled deep, so deep it’s hard for her to take a step.
But I know who she is, luminous and persistent and with an enthusiasm that makes us all want to drop our plows and join her crusade.
And you – you too – I don’t want to embarrass you but I know who you are too because our God, He does a good job when He makes things. He’s an expert sculptor and He made you, fear-fully and wonder-fully. I know who you are and you are filled with the glory of God, the star-throwing wonder of God, a universe of light contained in your body because He, the Light of the World abides there looking for all the ways you will give Him to explode glory on the earth.
You are a daughter, a son of the Most High God.
I know who you are.
The Woman in the Ordinary by Marge Piercy
The woman in the ordinary pudgy downcast girl
Is crouching with eyes and muscles clenched.
Round and pebble smooth she effaces herself
Under ripples of conversation and debate.
The woman in the block of ivory soap
Has massive thighs that neigh,
Great breasts that blare and strong arms that trumpet.
The woman of the golden fleece
Laughs uproariously from the belly
Inside the girl who imitates
a Christmas card virgin with glued hands,
who fishes for herself in other’s eyes,
who stoops and creeps to make herself smaller.
In her bottled up is a woman peppery as curry,
A yam of a woman of butter and brass,
Compounded of acid and sweet like a pineapple,
Like a handgrenade set to explode,
Like a goldenrod ready to bloom.
“It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you say it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree helping each other to one or the other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all of our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. nations, cultures, arts, civilizations – These are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit – immortal horrors or everlasting splendors.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory
I’ll be joining a couple of other luminous women linking this little piece of encouragement to their sites and still counting, always counting my thanksgivings with Ann:
1. A Christmas tree on our roof as we drive home
2. Xavier’s singing, “Tinkle, tinkle, little tar.”
3. Children creating and laughing at their own jokes (Grandpa is a doughnut! No, Uncle Matt is a doughnut!)
4. New Timberland boots after a girls’ shopping stop at Gabriel Brothers
5. Time to listen to John Eldredge’s Sacred Romance. Oh yes, that’s who I am.
6. Bagels and lox and capers and a brunch feast with my family before heading home
7. Xavier singing his abc…xyz’s with passion, skipping all interior letters.
linking at that lovely sisterhood:
Thanks Jen for hosting our weekly retreat!