The Hardest Person to Embrace

I see the moon and the moon sees me.

God bless the moon. God bless me.

-Nursery rhyme

//I bought a bouquet of muted fire. Orange roses for $3.99. For a whole week, I’ve been longing for them. I passed them by last week because it felt like a waste when I didn’t need them. Oh, but I do.

I need them dearly.

This week was my birthday. Thirty-eight years is beautiful, my friends. I love being this age: caring less what others think, slowing down just a tad, and still feeling like a total goober when I want to. (I get the biggest kick out of making my kids squeal and giggle right before bed time.)

I love the rest I feel settling into my beautiful bones. I relish the satisfaction taking the nap on a perfectly sunny day. I love writing in the middle of a March thunderstorm. I drink buckets of coffee, dream big dreams, and try to let things go.

There’s this one thing

Jesus said, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list.

But there is a second to set alongside it:

‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’

This one lesson. This second thing after the first one: loving myself.

I can’t love you unless I love me.

We all love ourselves, right?

As a kid, I did most certainly. I thought I was queen of the neighborhood and Barbie doll’s biggest rival. But years of pouring out my life, losing myself, wandering in the desert, and searching for my true home, I realize the truth. Loving others well comes after I learn to love myself. God already does. //

I’m still working on it.

A big thunderstorm is coming in a few minutes. I love it: the rain, the clouds, the green surging up from the ground as water pours. Maybe I will eat a piece of dark chocolate and cut the stems of the roses sitting in the porcelain pitcher and smell them until I know the words by heart:

…These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them. (MSG Matthew 22:39)

May the hardest person to love be the first we embrace.

May God’s words hang on my outstretched hands, my beautiful bones.

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March 24, 2017