I tip-toed, easily dodging where the wood floor complains rheumatic and, I think, a tad dramatic, too. I know this aging floor like the back of my hand; and morning feet bare, except for the gold sparkley nail polish I brushed on yesterday even though no one would see my toes because they would be in festive and all-about-fun stiletto pumps covered in bright floral patterns, know the way to the cheery red coffee pot without waking the floor boards.
Coffee slurps and gurgles brew. I stack my Bible, journal, pad of paper, and iPhone. I balance my full cup of coffee on the stack, tuck iPhone under my chin so it doesn't slide off the top, and sort of two-step back to the bedroom, across bathroom tiles, and into my closet. I close the door and lean back into the chair wedged between a shoe rack and hanging clothes. "Here I am, God!"
God's love dances in the halo of His own light; and He invites me to dance with Him; in the arms of Love Himself.
His everlasting arms support me. He cradles the back of my head in His hand and I look up long. He cradles the back of my head in His left hand and wraps His right arm around me and I lean back and look up. He supports the lean. He supports my head; my neck doesn't fatigue. And looking up, supported like this, He whispers, "When you fill My arms, you feel My fullness."
It's what I need to hear, because sometimes I feel the full become empty. Or maybe just less full.
He knows my daughter. My first daughter.
She's getting married today and it's joyful and oh, so beautiful. It's full and, well, also a little empty and a little teary, too. But this God of mine knows her and knows me and knows us, and knew in the wee hours this morning that I would need to feel His fullness because last night I hugged my daughter at the foot of her bed and that was the last good-night hug in her bedroom.
She will fill her husband's arms and I know that his arms will support her so she may lean far back to look up long and see the halo of love in his eyes and she'll just dance in the halo.
Is there anything more full than love? The thought awes me
"Love fills the empty." It's a God thought, and He's sharing this thought with me.
"Sometimes empty feels, well, empty. And uncomfortable. And too quiet." I confess what I feel to Him.
"Look up," He says. "I've got you supported, so look up long."
So that's what I do. I look up and think thoughts of abundance. I do, because in His arms I can.
"Hm-m?" He answers content because maybe He just likes to hold me this way.
"I like a full moon and a halo around it." It's an abundance kind of a thought.
He knows what I'm not saying; and answers it, "The full round grows from the empty."
He's not really talking about the phases of the moon. I get it. The new moon isn't lit up, and my little universe of a home isn't as lit up full as it was when four children burned a hole in the electric bill.
"But I desire abundance," I say. "Well, maybe not an abundant electric bill."
"You." God tilts my head and there's adoration in His eyes. "You desire abundance and abundance is holding you."
He speaks with double meaning. He's saying, "I Am abundance. I am holding you. Don't be held by any other abundance."
Ah. He is the God who fills the empty. He filled the void with light, land, sky, rivers, oceans, seas, vegetation all alive; and then with man and woman.
Man and woman. Made in His image. With the same desire for abundance that He and His Son and His Spirit have.
Maybe the desire for abundance doesn't mean there's no place for empty. Maybe desiring abundance doesn't mean there's no desire for empty, because maybe empty and full aren't opposites, but parts of the same thing. Maybe the desire for abundance isn't just about fullness, but is also about what's beautiful and necessary about empty.
"Even You," I amaze with newness, "couldn't have full before there was empty."
"I gave My Son. My Son moved out and I was an empty-nester."
"And," I'm relating to this Father, "You couldn't give just-because hugs to Your Son, because He was embracing His bride."
"Hm-m, and gathering the church into His arms;" He continues. "And His bride will fill My home with so many children that I've been making plans and drawing up blue-prints for a holy city!"
"I've been thinking about down-sizing, myself," I respond. And I am thinking about down-sizing because I'm about to be down three children!
My daughter's going to get married today.
The wedding wasn't big; it was full.
Full of family. Full with grandparents, aunts, uncles cousins, siblings, and a few close friends.
Full of tender love that just spilt down groom cheeks when his bride came into view. Full of laughter that spilt joyous love straight out from bride heart as she repeated her vows and her eyes were misty, too.
"Thank You," I breathe tonight.
"Thank You for this morning." My feet survived the stilettos and I'm bare foot on the patio.
"Thank You," I look up long into the night. I'm grateful He is Father. Parent. He knows what I'm feeling. He knows what it's like to feel full and empty, and empty and full at the same time.
I think abundant thoughts as I look up. I think, Big and Little Dippers must scoop into the heavens and ladle out streams of stars. I think, Great hunter Orion, must search out the empty spaces black between stars, and tip his arrow with star dust, pull the bow back taut, and ignite the night with star birth and blaze.
I sigh. "I want to dance with You, God, in the halo of Your full light."
My daughter got married today.
I watched her dance in the circle of her husband's arms and delighted at the kisses they shared.
They danced in the halo of love for one another.
"Let's dance, then;' God invites me.
"Right here? On the patio?" I feel like bride.
"Hm-m," He laughs soft. "You. Come. Feel My fullness in My arms."
And I guess this is why I painted my toe nails gold sparkle last night. It wasn't for the wedding, but for this moment.
And, did I mention, my daughter got married today?
written by: Carolyn-Elizabeth Roehrig