Wednesday, September 29, 2010

We pray . . .

. . . for large things to be made small and small things to be made large. Masses shrink. Iron levels increase.

This seems reasonable enough. Things can swell. Things can shrink. We've heard stories of or witnessed such miracles.

But what about lost things of a living, physical nature? A lost eye or limb, a clipped thumb.

Where there is physical loss--it seems to me--we rarely pray with the same fervor, the same purposefulness, the same level of hope and expectation that we would use to pray for more health or less sickness. More happiness and less pain. More good fortune and less disparity. Part of this, I'm guessing, is from our observation of this finite existence: we know that not all lost things can be restored, not here. What is lost physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially, financially, politically, personally, religiously is not always found, not always regained.

I am convinced, though, that every loss grants us other gains, often imperceptible to the naked eye, yet formative, defining, and alive.

I wonder what my losses mean. How they've changed me. If they've had any purpose beyond suffering. (Or if, as a human, I'm making meaning where there is none.)