In the movie, “The World According to Garp”, young child Garp climbs out onto a roof. He begins to slide down the roof and is soon hanging onto the gutter to keep from falling. The gutter begins to pull away from the roof, and the little boy clings to it to keep from falling. His mother leans out the window, and tells him, “Take my hand; let go, take my hand, let go of the gutter.” Garp takes hold of his mother’s hand, and she grabs him and pulls him to safety. Taking hold of something or someone reliable makes it possible to let go of what turns out to be a crumbling gutter that crashes to the ground.
I’m taking hold of what I have found to be reliable: my relationship with God; my activities that I enjoy such as knitting, cross stitching, YouTube videos of British comedy shows; activities that strengthen my interior life such as meditation, prayer, and walking; my siblings who are a reliable and loved constant in my life; friends who are treasures to me; my deep belief that this is the next right thing, so “all will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of things will be well” (Julian of Norwich), and I trust my annoyingly strong resilience that has served me well in the past.
By taking hold of what is trustworthy I’m letting go of fear: fear of failure, fear of success, and as well as all the primal fears of every new kid in school Also, I’m letting go of the lie that my worries are telling me that I’m in this on my own and that it’s all up to me, so if any problems happen they’re my fault. That’s not true, and I’m letting that thought go.
There is laundry tumbling in the dryer so I’ll have clean clothes for Phase 1 of the move. There is a strategy in place for getting the cats in a carrier on Tuesday. And I am looking forward to going to a Mennonite grocery store I’ve heard about near the town as well as the Farmer’s Market , and to decorating the apartment.
Taking hold of what we trust and those we trust means we can be free of the lies and fears that seem reasonable but are actually not trustworthy. Little Garp had to make the choice, to grab on to his mother whom he knew loved him and deserved his trust, or hang on to an inferior substitute which would ultimately betray his trust. Me, I’m choosing to take hold of this new good thing and my trustworthy Lord, and let what would rob me of joy and energy fall away like a rusty gutter falls to the ground.
Today’s Prayer Poem, shared with me by Becca Bowman Siddle: “Maggie and Milly and Molly and May by ee Cummings:
maggie and milly and molly and may
went down to the beach(to play one day)
and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,and
milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;
and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and
may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.
For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea
Grace and peace to you,