I hope it was not too much trouble having Alice spend the whole of last week with your family. She tells me time flew without so much as a warning until she had to return. And it was when I heard her say that, that I knew I had to write to you. You must pardon me for writing with a motive for I know how much you appreciate when I write without one. Truly those have been some of our most engaging exchanges.
A friend described the 26th of December as being the most depressing day of the year. Can you picture my reaction to this? I had only to turn away and terminate my friendship for such a qualification on the day of my birth seemed so unfair and impolite. But it IS true, isn’t it? The morning after, Monday morning blues, First day of work after a vacation, Cleaning up after a party; The sinking feeling when the moment is gone and is in the past.
We hate those moments. We have always hated them. We will always hate them. Remember Sam, how we would be so depressed on the first day of school after the long vacations that we would travel quietly on that bus ride in the morning without so much as uttering a word of greeting. We’d be sharing a seat on that bus, but each of us looking outside the window at no particular object yet with our gaze focussed in a certain angle and sifting through memories of the past few days in our minds. We would live through those moments all over again in our minds, wouldn’t we?
Passionate as we are about our experiences in life, this yearning for the present moment to last is naive, don’t you think? It’s one of those situations one must add to the “Better learn from your mistakes” list. But we don’t do that, do we? I see Alice still walking around looking lost. I am sure she must have enjoyed herself thoroughly with you to have such an after effect.
The paradox is this. As much as we hate the after effects of ecstasy, we’d rather go through the depressions of the morning after than curtail our yearnings to indulge. You must be wondering right now where I am headed with this thought, if I have suddenly turned conservative and am launching an attack against all the “fun” in life. No Sam, that is certainly not my intention. I am as liberal in such matters as you are with the cheese on your toast.
All around Sam, people are searching for experiences that will thrill them. That is the modus operandi for weekend pleasure these days. They want to jump off a cliff and not die, they want to be thrown in the air and yet be safely caught when they return, They want to new stories portrayed in cinema every weekend and expect a difference that is marked. And at the end of all of this “fun” the Monday morning is still a pain. I wonder what we gain from our weekend indulgences.
You and I have been married for how many years now Sam? Its close to eight years. Remember how we spent that evening by the stream off River Shous eight years back? We had only then confided in each other of our love for our women and how we knelt down on that rock and carved out our commitment statements to God and them. I am sure you will agree that evening still lives fresh in our minds. Thankfully it worked out well and these women are our wives today. But what if that had not been the case? We did realize that the possibility of our relationships not working existed. Yet we plunged into them with faith. Even past failures in such relationships did not hinder our falling all over again. I wonder what gave us that confidence.
There is a difference I suppose Sam that is evident. Was it not Solomon who had everything one could possibly imagine in life at his time and yet said “Ah.. this is all a chasing after the wind..” He was not satisfied.
Isn’t it ironical that as human beings we only “rest in peace” when we are in our graves. When we can feel no more.
Maybe this is the very reason Jesus referred to the peace he gives as one that surpasses ALL understanding. To the woman at the well he said ” You will drink and be thirsty again but whoever drinks the water I give will never thirst again!” He doesn’t stop there. He says “The water I give them will become a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” We can keep searching all around for that novel feeling, the ‘never befores’ and yet be left wanting and empty. Notice how Jesus addresses this very issue with the woman at the well. He told her earlier “You have five husbands and the one you are living with now is not your husband.” Five husbands could not satisfy her need for love in life.
Fascinating don’t you think? From being thirsty and never being satisfied to being fulfilled and overflowing. The transformation that only He can bring about.
I will be waiting to hear from you.