What do we do
when our family is crazy?
What do we do when our family is crazy?
When we hurt each other, when we ourselves are hurt.
We sometimes wrestle and writhe
and sometimes we just look out the window...
What do we do when our family
is cracked glass, flesh bleeding,
children cowering, a wound bigger than the house?
General Conference has shattered some glass.
What do we do?
We stay calm.
We remain a listening presence,
listening deeply to the words beneath the silence
beneath the words.
We remember Jesus the Listener
sitting in that third chair beside us,
trusting the Spirit moving beneath
and within and among us.
We blame neither those who stay nor those who go,
those who speak or those who are silent,
trusting that all our stories are our own,
not for others to write.
We give voice to the stories that haven't been heard
especially stories that are true
drowned out by fears that are false.
We remember how trauma bends the eye,
blurs the ear, yet makes our touch more acute.
How it shrinks the soul, begging for release.
We offer forgiveness. We give space.
We stand without shoving,
speak without shouting,
hope without wavering.
And we walk onward,
always toward the Kin-dom of God,
given, blessed and without escape.
When our family is crazy, we love them.
We tell them the truth, not saving them from their pain.
And when it is time, we marry our own love, not theirs.
And we invite them to the wedding.
~ Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Steve is the pastor at St. Matthew's UMC in Acton, MA. He is a poet and retreat leader and blogs at