It's been an interesting process, writing this sermon. I started it weeks ago, when I intended to preach it on Earth Sunday. But then life got in the way, in the shape of a detached retina, which meant I had to forego almost everything I'd planned from April 22 through God only knew when. So I had a bit of a beginning, but as I tried to take off again from that starting point, I could only ramble and pontificate and it wasn't working.
To complicate matters, though my vision is almost back to normal, there's this annoying streak through the vision in my left eye. It may clear up, it may not, but it is distracting enough that I wasn't having an easy time of it, sitting at the computer trying to write. So I'd make a bunch of notes, download a bunch of info, try to turn it into something useful, and throw up my hands in frustration. Sermon prep is not usually so daunting for me!
Then the Favorite Son called because he'd read the preceding post and wanted to talk about the emotional aspects of the human urge to merge, that sneaky little biological motivation that keeps people making like bunnies, despite the consequences. Other commenters to the blog post expanded the conversation. One contributor told me via Facebook that she hoped I wouldn't throw her and other parents with more than 2.1 children under the bus. I'm pretty sure Joel the Neff, a committed Catholic with 8 kids, felt the same! Relax, all, nobody's feet are sticking out from under the local Island Transit.
But eventually it all came together and I printed off the final version this morning. I ended up deleting a lot of the three-week-old draft beginning, but you won't miss it. I realized, in the process, that there are a lot of human problems that just plain can't be fixed overnight, if at all. The only thing we can do sometimes is to persist: in doing the first things first, in trusting, in putting one foot in front of the other, in changing our own little plot of ground, our own little negative habits. We can only change others by changing ourselves. Funny how my mother used to tell me that over and over; it's a lesson I learn almost every day.
Happy Mother's Day, Mom, wherever you are!