Tuesday, July 23, 2013

New mercies

I walked the dog this morning, something I haven't done much since becoming pregnant. My dear husband has developed a keen ability to sense when I need him to step in, grab the leash, and slip out the door, unheard. And I have been thankful.
But this morning, we were all moving a little slower and it was I that grabbed the leash and slipped out the door.

It is mid-July and every night the sky sinks heavy upon the earth, pressing out her moisture, coating every blade of grass, every secretly spun web, every petal of every bloom with dewy drops. I breathe in air that is thick and palpable and all but dripping.

I am instantly humbled that much of my walking these days feels just like that.

I am full with child now. My belly goes before me and I smile to think of how my body proclaims the truth that a child will, indeed, lead us. All I can do, anymore, is just follow him. This child lives and moves within me and sometimes I feel as if I will burst but, in all of this, together, we have our being.

It is heavy work, this being. The only way not to be completely undone in the process is by simply putting one foot in front of the other. And so we walk.

I turn the corner at the end of my driveway and see that the sun has peeked over the treetops, illuminating them from behind, gilding their edges. It is only because of Love that they are not wholly consumed and I receive it as one small glimpse of a new mercy. I sigh.

As we plod through the thick air there is a piercing, a trill that begins to unravel it all. A cardinal sings heartily unto its mate, beckoning her to follow, to come, to look and see that it is good. And He is right.

And then we see it.

The lake.

And it is as if gold dust, straight from the edge of heaven, has rained down in the night. Floating atop the water is the evidence of glory come down and the rising sun has now cracked open its very center. Diamond light flits and bounces and dances upon the surface and I am almost blinded by its burning.

My baby leaps.

I catch my breath.

And in a moment, this world, this life, this everything... it is thick and palpable and all but dripping and there is no way that I can take it all in before it is running down my fingers, soaking my feet, oozing from my skin, laughing its way down the road.

feels so full.

I look, again, at the water. At the dancing light and the shimmering beauty. I marvel at its hidden depths, all that is not yet revealed. I imagine what lives beneath the surface, what life has yet to emerge.

And I know it.

This is that grace ocean.

And we are all drowning...

Linking with Emily and Jennifer.


  1. "It is heavy work, this being. The only way not to be completely undone in the process is by simply putting one foot in front of the other. And so we walk."

    Yes. Oh Holly, this is *so* beautiful--the whole magnificent thing, but this line, this Im clinging to, because it's 100% true. Thank you for this radiance. I'm blessed for reading it. XO

  2. i am with you on your morning stroll. the atmosphere, still undecided of whether it would like to liquefy or remain somewhat breathable; "all that is not yet revealed" of your unborn leading us on to see mercies we can only behold when our eyes have been washed new to the glory of the everyday.
    and yes, the grace is an ocean. but why then do i push on, so dry, some days? why do i choose to stay "safe" and forget that death by drowning is the best way to live? thank you for your sharing all this glory come down. only a few lead me to worship like this, Holly. truly.

  3. Thank you, Kris. Grateful that you understand, that you know...

  4. "forget that death by drowning is the best way to live..."
    oh, Kelli...what beauty there is in that line.
    Thank you, friend.

  5. Beautiful as always. Swimming around in grace waves with you today and everyday.

  6. KristinHillTaylorJuly 24, 2013 at 8:55 AM

    "It is heavy work, this being. The only way not to be completely undone in the process is by simply putting one foot in front of the other. And so we walk." So beautiful. And such a true description of life. And I love the image you create that is so glorious that is causes your baby inside to leap. Pure joy, I'm sure.

  7. Thank you, friend.
    Grace waves...what a beautiful image...

  8. Thank you, Kristin.
    And that baby? He leaps and twirls and spins. Glory!

  9. Ah . . . you referenced on of my very favorite songs. Yes, we are all drowning in this grace.

    And it is heavy work, this parenting, even though I never carried my own babies within me. But I'm walking with you, one foot in front of the other, sometimes through fog and mist. And each step forward is victory; each step forward is grace.

  10. This is so beautiful, Holly. I loved reading this piece, feeling transported and full of the fullness of God. {And I smiled at your line: My belly goes before me!} God bless you as you prepare to welcome your precious child. Thanks for sharing this. Visiting from Emily's today. Blessings...

  11. ohh, drowning in this grace.

    absolutely amazing. this made me actually miss the feeling of carrying my little girl inside me, though she is now ten months old and i wouldn't trade her presence in this world for anything. but i cannot wait to bear another little one. oh...glory.

  12. Tara_pohlkottepressJuly 24, 2013 at 1:39 PM

    oh, this is holy and wonderful this heavy with living. with being... such beauty here. I feel you. i'm standing by that water, grabbing your hand, looking at the expanse of it all.

  13. Ashley Tolins LarkinJuly 24, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    Holly, I do not know how you do this, but I thank you for it. I am so glad I was right there with you on those rippling waves of grace and feeling again the leaps of His creation. And I do love how they lead us. Thank you so much for this utter beauty, friend.

  14. Oh Nancy, isn't it so true, like Ram Dass says, that we are "walking each other home"? Grateful to have you as a fellow pilgrim, friend.

  15. Sheila,
    So glad you stopped by! Thank you for your kind words and blessings. I will gather them up and hold them close. This baby making is hard work!

  16. Isn't amazing, Rachel? This harboring life beneath your very skin? We need that grace ocean don't we?

  17. And I will grab, wholeheartedly, for your hand, Tara. We need each other to muddle through this heavy living. I am so thankful for you.

  18. Ashley,
    Thank YOU, friend! And I know that you KNOW these things that I have spoken of because you are able to grab a hold of them with grace and beauty through YOUR words.
    Grateful for you.

  19. the heavy work of being, yes, this...
    and then we left His grace invade, and float

  20. Holly,

    Nice to meet you. I'm hopping over from the IP link up, and was caught up in your writing, smiling at the double entendre images, like "a child will lead them."

    Enjoying your prose this afternoon from a sunny Minnesota July,

    Jennifer Dougan