Lynda, this is for you:
I was waiting for Rob’s confirmation class to end on Sunday evening, and the Church was open, so I spent about 45 minutes in an empty sanctuary, almost dark. The alter lights were on, and the two candles that I lit in the chapel were glowing, and the flame from the two alter candles- they have a name that is escaping me, the ones that always burn.
I knelt, and prayed, for a long time. I was trying to open, to accept what messages, what feelings or thoughts may come, may be sent my way. This time, for whatever reason, be it the quiet, or the dark, or the alone, (Or, I may be insane, never forget that possibility), I was compelled to sit back.
I don’t know how to describe the directing, but it was very very clear to me, to stand, to go back to the space we’d stood in, in September. At the same time, I found myself holding my ring- without really being conscious of it, I’d pulled it off, and was playing with it, rolling it in my fingers, and hefting it’s weight; I could feel, clearly, the thinning bottom, the little remnants of the straightening process, the smooth little spots that are the diamonds.
I looked at it, there in the half-light, and saw how the little chips flared the reflection of the candles’ flames, the soft glow of the gold, the never-ending band, the circle that it is. I wondered, what is it that I am to learn, from this? From this time, this ring, this sanctuary, what message am I being given?
Another compulsion then, and I knelt once more, but this time at the rail, the brass that is kept so lovingly polished, dedicated effort to keep from tarnish; the kneeler cushions soft, and still the feeling in me, that I am not hearing what I’m there to hear- somehow, I’m missing something. Frustrating, like being able to only half-hear the words to a song, to try to make out what someone is watching on tv downstairs, but only partly able to hear it at all.
I looked at my ring again, there under the lamp, where we’d stood to return them to our fingers, and it occurred to me, that the reason it can come off now, is not that it needs to come off to be taken from me, as I’d feared, as I’d had nightmares about.
No, I felt that the reason it can now come off, is to show itself to me- to be examined, weighed, looked at, thought about.
Not taken for granted.
Symbols, they’re important to me; so, if the symbol of vows, of commitment and renewal and working together, playing and laughing and crying and loving, and all that makes up our lives, if that symbol is this ring, perhaps-
Perhaps, it is now telling me, that what is symbolized can not be taken for granted, either.
Perhaps, the examining of the symbol is to examine the referent? If so, then weighing and looking and touching and wearing, all of these things that have to happen for our lives together, perhaps that is why this symbol was made round again?
Even, maybe, that’s why this was made shiny and bright again? So my attention must be drawn to it, so my consciousness of it is renewed, it is in my head, and therefore my heart?
Maybe, I’m insane-
But, I don’t believe that to be the case.
No, I believe, firmly, that that time was needed, a message for me, that there is someone else in this with us, someone who can guide us, if we will listen.
I’m trying to listen.