Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Pouring rain outside, chicken soup simmering on the stove, iTunes having its way with me.

Sometimes the juxtaposition of one song against another can be so poignant. Marc Cohn singing “True Companion”—a song that rips all the fragile sinews in my heart. Such a love song, a man singing to a woman, a woman he loves and wants to marry. Oh, to be a woman who has a man feel that way about her. It hurts, this loneliness. It hurts to think I don’t have that kind of love and the chances of ever having it are remote. And I say aloud to God, “Is this really what you wanted for me? Is this it?”

Was God really answering me? The next song comes up on the iTunes rotation—“Came to My Rescue”—a song by a contemporary Christian group. The lyrics: “I called, you answered, and you came to my rescue, and I want to be where you are.”

Can God really be enough? Can His supernatural presence really overcome the longing for a “true companion” in the earthly sense? I want the presence of God in my life to be so strong that I no longer feel the absence of the one who isn’t there. And I am reminded once again of a poem that deeply affected me many years ago.

Yet I wonder as I lie with him tonight
And mumble praise into the vacant pillow,
If it is not the same
And he another, who, being what he is, has excuse for absence.
I see his form pass through the dark forest
And as I lie in terror and desire
Feel his breath upon my face
And my humanness.

(Lynne Lawner, Wedding Night of a Nun: Poems. Little, Brown and Company. 1964.)

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