My home is scattered with pieces of sentiment. They sit upon countertops. They adorn my walls in frames. They are hand-crafted, prized possessions, given to me by people who have been in and out of my life. Some I barely knew, while others, such as a grandpa and a great aunt, I had meaningful relationships with. Due to death, or a few one on one encounters, I have lost connection. I no longer see these people, but their craftsmanship displays a demeanor that speaks about faith. It echoes throughout my home.
There is a painted portrait of me when I was ten on one wall; a pier with a sailboat floating in the ocean on another. There is tree bark propped in a stand in my entry hall – someone whittled a cross from it. Yet, the one that screamed out loud recently is a penciled drawing I received from a college student who happened to hear my testimony years ago. The detail and imagery is astounding. Inscribed upon the right-hand side is part of the verse from Isaiah 30:15:
“In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength”
Peace. It is a lesson that I revisit religiously, and not by choice…piece by piece. My life has certainly been a revolving door of shrapnel flying in the face of uncertainties, fears, and brokenness. Throughout the years, I constantly hear His voice not in decibels blaring through megaphones, but in that inaudible reassurance which beckons me to trust. My home is one such place…but there are others. The acoustics ring loud, crystal clear.
This time it happened in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. A friend and I were driving back from lounging on the shores of Malibu. Lethargic from the afternoon sun rays, the music provided the backdrop of ambiance, filling in the gaps of silence. Bright red taillights shone up ahead. Lanes merged from various arteries of traffic combining thoroughfares into one route. Cars swished by us. My hair danced to the rhythm of the autumn wind. I simply cherished the day.
The skyscrapers stretching towards the heavens towered, providing patches of shade here, illumination from light there, depending upon the angle and position of the setting sun. Those architectural marvels hovered over our world, highlighted from hues and contrasts amid the ebb and flow. This is when I noticed in the passenger mirror the vehicle next to us. I snapped this photo to capture the experience. I am not sure just how long that vehicle lingered. I hadn’t noticed, looked, even paid attention. Regardless, it was still just a glance away, reflected in a mirror.
God speaks in the most familiar of places, and simplistic of circumstances. He is closer than I think. And, I worry. I have insecurities. Like everybody, the outcome of my future remains unknown. Fears swarm. My loneliness festers. Frustrations run rampart. It comes back to peace. Do I possess the confidence it warrants? It makes me consider those cherished commodities that pose as relics in my home. I walk by them everyday, and have seen them for years. They were made with voiced intentions. Still, they are just a glance away. Will I stop…stare? Do you hear the nuances?