Tuesday, April 25, 2017

When What's Lost is Found~

It comes drifting into my ears
on the waves of the wind
and sneaks up on my heart
in a most beautiful way -
the whistling of my elderly neighbor.

We have shared a fence for over 19 years.

And, for as long as I've known him,
each time he's been out in his yard,
my heart has been serenaded
by his carefree, whistle-while-you-work melody.

Day after day,
month after month,
year after year -
except for the
days and the months and the year
following the death of his sweet precious wife,
about six years ago now.

"Poor Mr. L.  Have you noticed, Handsome?  He's lost his whistle."

Lowering his head, and then lifting his eyes up to meet mine, he had nodded his head yes.

And really, who wouldn't have noticed.

Our little corner of the neighborhood minus his whistle
was just like the time the neighbors behind us
cut down the huge cottonwood tree that shaded our entire back yard.

It was missed.
And, the absence of it, undeniably noticeable.

And then one day it happened.
On a Sunday, matter of fact.

A basketball game on TV and my laptop in my lap,
my husband and I were enjoying leisurely time together
when . . .
through the open window,
on the waves of a gentle afternoon breeze,
it came drifting into our ears
and snuck up on our hearts
in a most beautiful way -
the whistling of our elderly neighbor.

I looked at my husband.
He looked at me.
And, without either of us saying a word,
we both stood up,
met in the middle of the room,
and exchanged a long hug and a sweet, tender kiss.

Then, we both just looked at each other and smiled.

And I can't help but wonder,
over these past 14 months,
(now that I am in his shoes)
has our elderly neighbor glanced in my direction,
and noticed something undeniably absent from me?

I have a feeling he probably has.

The look in his eyes
while we chit-chat over the fence
has said more than his words ever could.

I'm sorry you're going through this.

I know how hard it can be.

My heart hurts just knowing the hurt in yours.

Just give it some time.

It'll get better. It will.

And what this precious man doesn't realize,
what he couldn't possibly ever know,
is that in the melody of his whistle,
God has been singing to me
a beautiful song of hope.

If Mr. L. was able to find his whistle again,
maybe I will, too.

And while neighborhood living
with neighbors so close,
has never been my preferred way to live,
I'm thankful this elderly man is on
the other side of my fence,
especially during this season,
especially now.

Let us hold firmly to the hope that we have confessed, 
because we can trust God to do what he promised. 
Let us think about each other and help each other to show love and do good deeds. 
You should not stay away from the church meetings, as some are doing, 
but you should meet together and encourage each other.  
Do this even more as you see the day coming.
~Hebrews 10:23-25

All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort.
He comforts us in all our troubles
so that we can comfort others.
When they are troubled, 
we will be able to give them
the same comfort God has given us.
~2 Corinthians 1:3,4










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