Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Physical Proximity

When I was in college, my heart was knit to the guy who had slowly become my best friend. 
And he fell for me too. But we kept our secrets separately. 
I, out of desire for him to pursue me. 
He, because he knew he would be flying around the whole big world 
to spend the summer as a missionary in Papua New Guinea, 
and he didn't want to tie up our summers with distraction. 

He told me his secret over the Chinese dinner we cooked together that fall. 
And I didn't tell him then, but I will tell you now, how I spent the summer: 

When I missed him, I did math.
It was 9,000 miles around the earth to where he was. 
But it was only 7,900 miles through the earth. 

So I marched through the hay field to the lowest part of the valley,
and I pressed my face and my chest to the ground, my heart beating into the dirt.
It was the closest I could get to him. 

After I got back from Jerusalem, I tried to find a way to explain to people what it meant to me, 
why it moved me so much. And this is the only metaphor I could draw. 
While God's Spirit lives inside of me, Jerusalem was the closest I could get 
to the physical, tangible aspects of my Savior. 
And I never wanted to leave.

I miss Him more now. I long for Him with a deeper intensity. 
But it has granted my heart something that almost feels giddy, 
anticipating that day when we will dine and share stories of our great love 
as we sit at the banquet table. 

Come back soon. 

* This bottom photo is the Garden of Gethsemane. 
Shortly after I took this picture, our tour guide told me that two of the trees in this garden 
(including the one in the center of the photo) are over 2,000 years old, 
which means they were standing when Christ prayed here on the night before His death. 


Stephanie Parrish said...

I love this :) Makes me want to hurry up and go to Jerusalem myself!!

Angella said...

Beautiful picture of what our longing for Christ should look/feel like. Thanks for the word pictures (and the actual pictures too!).

Melissa Danisi said...

I was just in Jerusalem in June. I long to go back, I can't explain it. The week after we were home, I was mopping my kitchen floor and said to myself "mopping my floor is so lame compared to walking in Israel!". Grateful that our God is near no matter where we are, He is with us during our house chores and during our travels. Can't wait for the New Jerusalem!

Ugena Moses said...

Really enjoyed this post! I read Here's to Hindsight after I read a review of it on and enjoyed "tagging along" with you! The book was so real and relatable. Thanks for allowing God to use you!

Aimee said...

That's amazing. Thanks for giving Troy and me a reason to stop and reflect.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I know what it is to want someone like that - and its amazing when God turns that into a lesson about his love.
That picture of the tress was absolutely beautiful.

Christine said...

This makes me want to weep. Beautiful.

Adrienne Graves said...

Hi. I'm a friend of Erin Szczerba's and she pointed me here. Thanks for sharing this. And thank you for posting the picture of this tree in the Garden of Gethsemane. I love the prayers my Lord cried out under that tree, because He showed me, in praying the same prayer THREE TIMES, that, yes, God does give us more than we can handle here on earth. HOWEVER, in the center of His will, with His strength and in our weakness, that is where His power is made known. Thanks for the visual!

Liz Holmes said...

Beautiful parallel. Just found your blog!