Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Moth

He was sitting there, peacefully, in a nest of clover raised high by too much rain and time. One small moth, sitting blissfully unaware of the devastation happening at his small level. I grunted and pulled and wrestled the mower into position once more as fat sweat drops fell off the end of my nose.

This was the end of a long day. The type of day when I prayed for enough gas fumes to make it through mowing since our gas envelope sat empty inside the house. The weeds, ignored for far too long, graze my shins with each pass.

 As I neared his resting place, the blades chopped up and spit out stalk after stalk, leaving milkweeds to ooze in the dipping sunlight. As the wheels hit his nest, the moth shot out of the grass, dizzied and blindly trying to find the way up. Frantic, he slammed into the side of the mower over and over, unable to escape.

On a normal day, I would have pressed on. After all, what is a moth? They do me no good. They don't eat smaller bugs or scare off snakes. They are ugly to look at, and most nights I sit and listen to the cacophony of their bodies ricocheting off the porch lights left on too long. For some reason, today is different, and I am moved by his plight enough to still the mower and let it idle in place.

It strikes me then, that this small pitiful creature and I, we are after all very similar. You see, when I was ugly and had nothing to offer, One who is perfect and most beautiful took my place. There are still days, when I am cocooned in my own little nest, blissfully unaware of the devastation that is about to meet me head-on. I am left wounded and blind, groping for the surface. I fly left and right, come up choking and gasping for air. When all along, He asks me to only look up.

I am learning a lesson so simple that it's taught to children, yet so powerful that it's changing the way I see my Father and the rest of my life. That lesson is gratitude. I'm learning to praise, to give thanks, to look UP - even in the hard moments- because that's where you find joy. When I lift my eyes off my circumstance and onto the face of the One who is GOOD, even in my not yet, even in my hurts, suddenly my circumstances don't matter as much. I'm reminded what it is to be held, even in the middle of the storm.

"Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world."  - John Milton

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