She has a luminous beauty that has been honed
and made incandescent by circumstances beyond her control.
We talk about life and where each of us finds ourself in this journey.
I have come hoping to encourage her.
We carefully sip our hot fragrant cups of coffee, guarding them with our hands. She eats her oatmeal while I enjoy my raisin scone with hints of lemon. It is easy, these precious hours we spend today in one another's company. It is refreshing for my soul. I don't pretend. Nor does she. We are content to be ourselves. It is a gift. One I do not take lightly.
This lovely woman and I found a common ground in our faith years before. We studied God's word side by side, prayed and walked together through a season of life fraught with change. Oddly enough, we somehow find ourselves several years later on that same continuum, living lives fraught with change.
I am the older woman in this relationship of ours, she much younger. Today she confessed that she once thought I lived a perfect, flawless life. I resisted the urge to laugh or to scream. I was shocked and horrified. Thankfully, the story of our friendship moved beyond that lie.
We have been honest. We have shared our stories. We are sharing our stories. We are each learning daily about the blessing of truth and the gift of freedom. And perhaps most importantly, we are learning the importance of acknowledging and embracing the loneliness of the soul. Ahh...the loneliness of the soul. No one wants to acknowledge it, much less embrace it. Yet, the loneliness of the soul, is, I believe, precisely what draws us into communion with the One who has called us His own.
The hours slip by. I have come hoping to encourage, but I leave knowing that I have received far more than I have given. If there were scales on which to measure, it would be an uneven exchange. But there are no scales. There is only the gift of the Spirit. He comes, He sees, He ministers. He uses the words and the voice of the young woman who sits across from me. I hear Him calling to me. She and I have shared two hours of conversation, but I have been bathed in the gift of the Lord's presence. I am more than satisfied. I am at peace.
"My heart rejoices in God my savior"..."therefore I am filled with gladness of soul."
Sweetened by the coffee, the scone,
and the face of the girl before me,
in the broken and the real,
I find the beautiful,
the hidden gold.