A blessing for a year that didn’t turn out like we thought it should.
Blessed are you who look back in grief,
you have lost so much.
And no amount of perspective or gratitude will fix it.
It was never supposed to be this way.
Blessed are you for whom this was all the time you had left
and it was spent locked inside,
fearful, disappointed, lonely.
The hugs, you never gave the goodbyes you never said.
The clock was not on your side.
Blessed are you oh tired one.
The parenting, the caregiving, the worrying, it is too much. Teaching and doctoring, pastoring and nursing,
you have no choice but to keep showing up.
Blessed are you who are anxious for what comes next,
who wait for the other shoe to drop and toss and turn until sunup. Wondering where the next paycheck will come from,
what the next scan will reveal,
how you’ll keep it together for the ones you love.
And blessed are you who hope still.
Despite all you’ve seen and all you’ve gone through,
you cling to an audacious belief
that this is not all there is.
You trust that the dawn is coming.
No, 2020 has not been the year we needed,
we grieve collectively, let alone in our homes,
and long for the day where we can be together again
when hope isn’t just another four letter word,
but something tangible,
something we can taste and see, feel and touch.
In the meantime, we wait.
During this long stretch of [Winter],
may our grief remind us of our capacity to love,
may our courage be contagious,
may we find tiny pockets of joy,
and may we continue to be people of hard won hope
who know how to live amidst uncertainty,
inside of the limits of our bodies and minds and homes
and choose to build beautiful lives here still.
We are the people who know
that beauty and love and truth can still
grow out of the hard cold ground.
And sometimes that can feel like just enough to cling to,
just enough to carry us through.
(from Kate Bowler, Everything Happens podcast, season 5, episode 32:)