This started out as notes. I wasn't sure if the notes would be for a blog post on Mind Flotsam or on Me And Ray And A Dog Named Grey. In the end, I decided to simply post it as is, on both blogs. Yes, I am lazy :) But, the longer post I have been trying to work on for weeks detailing Daddy's illness, surgery, discovery of cancer, and our journey back to Pittsburgh, just doesn't seem to be coming together. So here is something, anyway. ~jm
2013 Apr 7 Notes for possible blog post
One of my Facebook friends is Jamie The Very Worst Missionary. I also subscribe to her blog posts. Today her blog led me to the website of her church, Lakeside, in Folsom CA. That in turn led me to blog posts by the pastor. Which led me to sobbing at my table as I read about the pastor's Mom and her passing.
The posts were poignant and funny, to use the pastor's word: Bittersweet.
One reason I was so touched by the posts, is that my own Daddy is dying. And to quote Brad, "we're all dying, but this is different". Very different when it is someone you've loved all your life.
Selfish: he's 87 I have friends who lost their Dads at much younger ages. I don't care! I want my Daddy! (I seem to fluctuate between the bossy former nurse, the oldest child organizing things, and the terrified eight year old. that exclamation came from the eight year old.)
Selfish again: he told the oncologist, "Doc, I've been around long enough" He seems to accept his mortality. I have trouble with that.
Selfish & guilty: well meaning friends ask if my Dad knows Jesus. My response has become: in a Catholic way. Cop out? Truth? I fear bringing up the topic of Jesus, redeemer and salvation, because I don't want to alienate my Daddy. We are talking more than we ever have in all our years. Not just about sports & superficial stuff. For the first time, Daddy is sharing with me stories about his feelings, things he loved doing, his friends, his interactions with the parish priest, Fr Matthew Kebe, when Daddy was a teen & an adult, and lots of other personal insights. I do not want to approach him in any way that will close off this flow of interaction. I fear if I say something about Jesus, he will shut down on me and all opportunities will be lost…
Trying to maintain trust in the Lord: perhaps I am grasping at straws, but I see this mornings sequence of Jamie's post and where it led, as a sign that God has it all under control. I also saw that same sign in Daddy's sharing stories about Fr Kebe with me on Easter.
(Partially because when I was having difficulty, many years ago, accepting my former pastor's declaration that he would not baptist me, my friend Martha shared something she had written regarding not re-baptising an adult who had been baptized as an infant. She sighted the work of the Holy Spirit, and how we can never really KNOW, which caused me to think about Fr Kebe. I had not thought of him, maybe ever! Yet, after reading Martha's paper, he came to mind. And somehow, knowing what a godly man, priest, he was gave me peace that even if my parents were having me baptized at 3 weeks old out of Catholic convention, the faith and dedication of the priest bringing me before the Lord, and HIS connection through the Holy Spirit were enough to allow the Spirit to work in me.)
Anyway, I am trusting that through the same Holy Spirit, God will give me words when the time is right, to talk to my Daddy about the redemption offered to all through Jesus death and resurrection. Perhaps our shared remembrances of Fr Kebe will be the door that leads to that conversation...