by Rene Allen
It is blog time again. I have delighted in this week’s postings, finding in them two of my favorite things: truth and humor. Otherwise, the week has been frustrated with family difficulties and preparation for a wedding that will happen in only six days from today. And yes, I’ve had some trouble sleeping.
Yesterday, the Sabbath, 4:00 AM. Outside my window, the sky is ink colored and marked with a silhouette of the horizon that is blank like a construction paper cut-out—outline only with no internal detail.
It is the way each day starts, vague and poorly defined. The day progresses and fills with particulars, with who, what, why, where and how and all those things that become the times and places of our lives, just like this view outside my window where the lacy outlines of trees emerge from the smooth, bulky shapes of earliest dawn. A few minutes more and I will see leaves and branches and the gray streaks of distant clouds.
I amazed to think each day begins with this metaphor of possibility. It is the way things are, that these evolving shapes dimly lit by my present circumstances over time will fill with detail to be seen precisely in the light cast by my own agency and experience.
Saturday of this week, my youngest son is getting married. In many ways, his, and his soon-to-be wife’s futures are also defined like the shape of an early morning horizon. The big pieces are there, but the details have not yet been put into place.
I have considered what I would tell them as they begin life together, as they fill in the structure and color of each shape with their actions and the way they treat each other. Ultimately, these details will become memories. What color will they be? What feelings will be attached to them? Not just events, but rich emotions, too, will be illuminated as they create experiences together.
I would suggest they cultivate kindness and patience, a well-thought answer rather than a fiery reply, and generosity of spirit – the work is ours, not his or hers. I would hope they pray together and that they both honor the priesthood my son bears.
The beauty of their lives together is something they will create. The single most important tool they will use to create this life is agency. It will determine how they love, how they settle disagreements, how they worship their Father in Heaven.
A new day, a new page, a new marriage – each waits to be filled with those details that bring meaning and make memory.
And at the end of the day? In the waning light of a setting sun, my ability to recognize the leaves and flowers and clouds outside my window diminishes until all I can see is that vague juncture between horizon and sky. Yet I know what is there, and recall it in my mind’s eye, and because it is beautiful, I have the hope of another dawn.