It’s a long drive to Marion, Indiana from Andover. Ten long hours in the car, plus an hour lost on the way. Black as night by 5pm and we’re only halfway there.
But the company is good, and the music. The playlists on Nils’ phone never get old, as long as we can keep the speaker charged. Ben Rector. Zac Brown Band. A new album from Hillsong United. What will I do when I don’t have boys to keep my music cool?
We ask each other random questions, just to pass the time. What was your favorite Christmas present? If you had to eat at the same restaurant every day for the rest of your life, what would you choose? Who are your best friends? If you had to spend $100 right now what would you buy?
And I know it’s cliché, but I’m thinking these long hours cooped up in the car are PRICELESS.
We’re driving to Indiana for a college visit. Already, with boy number three. It’s going too fast, and I can hear the struggle in my husband’s voice when I call to check in. Another boy, moving on. Maybe ten hours away.
But not yet. He’s only a junior, and we have time.
Back at home Kyle and the boys bond over video games and movies. Our new normal. But the mood is light, and their conversations are about the future, too. Girlfriends, and Driver’s Ed, and part-time jobs, and saving up money for cars. Boys becoming men everywhere we look.
Luke calls Kyle to ask for advice. Grant sends me texts of last weekend’s worship. And this is how we’ll roll for the next season or so.
Driving back west after a full day on the college campus, Nils naps while the sun is setting. And for maybe an hour I’m enthralled with the sky. The red of the sun reflects off clouds for as far as I can manage to look without driving off the road. I try to take a picture with my phone at 65 miles an hour, which doesn’t do it justice. But all this breathtaking sky has me thinking.
We all share the sky. Iowa. Colombia. Minnesota. Indiana. All of us, everywhere. The one thing we’ll always share.
It makes me think of something else, too. During the first hours of our trip Nils told me about something he learned in his theology class. It was something about how God’s Spirit is always communicating with our spirit – and often without using human language. This is why we can know God in a way that’s deeper than words.
Pretty deep for seventeen.
So with Nils sleeping and the sky declaring, I contemplate the glory of God. Beyond words. Knowing without adequate explanation that He is good, and He is love. Today, tomorrow, forever.
Back at home Kyle and Felipe work on the same Theology assignment. And I wonder how father and son – and Father and son – are getting along. And I rest in knowing His Spirit can reach any spirit. Language never a barrier.
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.