Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Sun

I was rummaging through the cavernous depth of my purse one-handed at the stoplight. Mister had requested gum and I was feeling generous and carefree, memories of gum in hair, clothes and the carpet all forgotten in the blinding winter sunlight. “Sorry, Buddy, I can’t find any.” I said, the van inching forward in the queue waiting to turn left.
“Ya, you can find it!” He retorted with some indignation. “The sun is looking in there with you.”

The old soul had spoken. So I redoubled my efforts and pondered the gift of sunlight. It warms. It grows the grass. Magically makes my bones stronger in a process with Vitamin D I will never understand. It drives away the fear and hyenas that rule at night. It tells me when I should rise and begin my work again. And it illuminates the contents of my purse so that the items that have gone missing can be found.
A friend recently relayed a story of a young girl that had wandered from her family in the mountains. Search and rescue workers combed the alpine slope all night. The morning light cut through the trees, to show a cold and tired child shivering on a rock mere feet from the trail. She had been there all along. But no one had seen her in the darkness and she had been too frightened to answer their call. But daylight changed everything. It gave the rescuers sight and emboldened the little girl to respond.

Someone recently said, “a little sunlight is a fabulous disinfectant.” I immediately thought of the pillows and duvet covers draped across the lawn chairs of my parent’s backyard, soaking up the hot, California sun and driving out winter’s bed bugs. Or the times I have rolled up my pant cuffs and stretched out my toes at the park, eager for the sun to warm and bake my little piggies. I also thought of the times I have sidestepped the bright light, either in vain shame over wrinkles and shabby clothes or things more serious and difficult to talk about. Either way, if Mister is correct, the sun is ready and willing to look with me in the darker places to find the things that I have lost. It was no accident that Christ cast a vision for his followers as salt and light. Light helps us see. Helps us find things or be found. Helps us grow.

“You are the light of the world.” Matthew 5:14