- Sonya Leigh Anderson
I was seven verses into a Psalm before I remembered. It was Election Day. Somehow I’d managed to brew a pot of coffee, and take a longish shower without any recollection. Of course, I had an excuse. My husband’s absence on my mind. He’d slept over in the Orthopedic Suites, new hip successfully installed the day before. Our niece, Taite, the nursing assistant, giving him care. I’d be driving back for discharge mid-morning; by mid-afternoon our oldest son and family would arrive to keep us company for the first week of Dad’s recovery. So I’d been mentally processing the day’s events, clearing space for morning Bible and communion of prayer, when it struck me. Historical significance of this extraordinary date.
“What’s your over-under on the date it will be official?” I’d asked an adult son this question a few weeks prior. Imagining a scenario identical to the one we’re now living, and didn’t we all? Of course it won’t be cut-and-dry. Not in 2020.
What now? What changes? We hold our collective breath, hoping for something hopeful, post-election, or at least by the end of the calendar year.
All week I play with a toddler, cuddle a baby, try to keep my post-surgical husband somewhere on my radar. Our only TV in this Retreat is up an extra flight of stairs, my firstborn and husband opting instead for a mesmerizing fire, main level. Occasionally I catch someone checking a phone, my own forgotten amid the scattering of Nana’s toys and read-aloud books. “Is there any new news?” Figuring someone will keep me informed if anything of relevance actually breaks.
Friday dawns, predicted temps 30 degrees above normal, and two weeks back we were breaking records in the other direction. Typical normal for Minnesota. Maisy crawls into my lap for one last reading of Jesse Bear and ABC’s with Dr. Suess. I scoop Baby Nash for one last snuggle, his runny nose now answering a question I’d had about our year of COVID precautions. Poppy and Nana both feeling a bit congested this morning, throats scratchy—and yes, it does appear the common cold will be a real possibility, at least for those of us with Grands.
All this normal, and it’s hard to remember the state of our nation hangs in the balance. A return to my Psalm, and I wonder…
Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart…
Be still before the Lord
and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Psalm 37:3-4 & 7
Each side throwing accusations at the other—and “How will we ever know what’s TRUE?”
The question came up during a game of CODENAMES, Thursday night. Kids in bed, and Nils joining us over FaceTime. He’s quarantined in Iowa, having tested positive earlier this week. A not-so-pleasant birthday surprise for our just-turned-22-year-old son, least likely offspring to choose solitary confinement in any situation. So we send him pictures of our game-board, and he plays along like he’s right here with us at the dining room table. Between clues we discuss the election, and someone asks about knowing what’s true. And I am struck again by the wisdom of my one-time youngest, who answers without a trace of COVID-cloudiness. “Jesus is True.”
Of course, He’s True. And nothing changes.
Today is Saturday, and between sore-ish throats and the crash of too many months of construction labor, Kyle and I enjoy our sleep longer than normal. We finally stir to make coffee, and he insists he’s able to balance mug with one crutch. All week we’ve been thanking God for the miracle of a brand-new hip, a body resilient to heal so quickly. This new normal is feeling good. And I head upstairs, first time typing at my old keyboard in my new library. White pine and red oaks tower outside my east-facing window, and I marvel again. Delighting in The One who knows the desires of my heart. The One who will never cease to be TRUE.
A little while, and the wicked will be no more;
though you look for them, they will not be found.
But the meek will inherit the land
and enjoy SHALOM.
P.S. News this morning. It appears we've declared a winner. I think.