I’m tired and drained to the core. I’m searching inside for a place of rest and when I close my eyes I can see it clearly. A log cabin, secluded in the mountains, with a gurgling stream making its presence known nearby. I can see myself at the end of the walk that leads to the front door. It is a mild summers’ day and a man is bent over working in the flowerbed with his back to me. He wears work clothes and his hands are dusty from working in the soil.
He turns at the sound of my footsteps and doesn’t seem particularly surprised to see me. I continue to approach him now, feeling a little shy. “Hello,” he says. I stop two feet away from his six-foot frame. As I look up in his face, he softly calls me by name and closes his eyes. “It’s really you,” he sighs in pleasure. He is so pleased to see me that I gain a little confidence.
“Come on in”, he says. He leads the way into the cabin and as he pulls open the screen door, it squeaks like the one that graces my childhood home. It’s as if it announces my arrival. Once inside, I see that he has created the cabin just to my liking. He’s been expecting me. I am enveloped by all of my favorite colors. Few people allow themselves to clip so many sprigs of flowers. However, he has indulged himself of the pleasure and I wonder out loud if there are any flowers left on the bush! Apparently my delight is worth it for he chuckles with deep satisfaction. The summer breeze follows me in through the screen. I breathe in deeply of freshly mown grass and worked up soil from the garden. And what is this other wonderful aroma? My eyes search throughout the room to find the source and finally spot a table in front of the sofa. Inside a huge vase is the biggest arrangement of fresh lilacs I’ve ever seen.
“Come sit with me,” he says as he sits on one end of the sofa and pats the seat next to him. Without thinking, I curl up on his lap like it is second nature. I’m struck by how completely at ease in his presence I am. He wraps his arms around me and sighs with relief and pleasure. He repeats my name, again and again; as if this is the moment he has been waiting for as well.
“Welcome home,” he says. “You’ll notice there are no clocks. Tell me your story…and there IS time for me to hear all of it. I’ve waited so long for this.” I sigh with discomfort…and wonder where in the world to start. He hears a few painful hesitations…then interrupts and takes over with an unexpected suggestion. “Tell you what,” he says. “Let me tell you your story.”
I settle into his arms more deeply, relieved that I won’t have to find the words. His version takes a long time. He starts the story when I was a part of his heart, before my birth. He speaks of the dilemma of allowing my entrance into a world of some joys, but of unspeakable pains as well. When he addresses the failures of the people in my life, he includes a detailed look into their minds and hearts. I lay at rest when he is finished, having a more complete understanding of others, and myself.
I am at peace, knowing that someone knows me so well. He told the story better than I ever could have. As I continue to rest, I notice that I am no longer an adult, but a little girl. The change is effortless and without intention on my part. I do not point it out to him. Nor does he embarrass me by drawing attention to it. I fit more easily on his lap now. I hear his heart beat and am lulled by the rhythm of it into a semi-conscious nap. I hear my own shallow breathing, am aware of my own childlike mannerisms, but once again I’m struck by the fact that I am happy and content.
I fall to sleep memorizing all His endearances. The way He says my name, the way He touches my cheek, the way He holds me so securely that every muscle goes limp. I drift off as he says, “Come back to the cabin as often as you want. I made you experience peace like this.”