. . . A significant ten days lies behind me. Chicago last week-end and the suicide prevention walk today. What do I notice? That no matter how hard we work, no matter how far we walk ~ eight miles all over Hyde Park, four miles in Cleveland ~ Josh does not come back.
I do not understand this at all. Where is he? I need him to come back, right now.
I found myself wondering, off and on all day today: When I die, will he be there? Will all be resolved? Will none of this matter? Or not?
I have said it before and it remains the case: I have no particular kind of idea or sense of anything about life after death. I guess I probably never will. Until, you know, after death.
. . . I spent some time today talking with a good friend of whom I no longer see nearly enough. The mother of one of Josh's best friends, her husband was seriously disabled when the boys were nine, I think. A long time, twenty years. My God, our lives have been difficult. I told her that I think that sometime around the age of 50, we seem to break into two populations. For some of us, as one of my seminary professors posted on FB a year or two ago, "life just gets better and better." (Yes, I did resent that post.) For others, not so much. Deaths of spouses and children, strokes, cancer, unemployment, completely unbloggable trials . . . it would be unbelievable, how dramatically life can be altered in a matter of seconds, if it weren't so pervasively true.
. . . I have been grading college papers this week. My students are writing about all kinds of things in response to Paul Tillich's concept of "ultimate concern," but two topics stand out. They are so innocently confident in the possibilities of romantic love. I don't think that I was ever ever ever as hopeful and naïve as they are. They are impossibly sweet.
At the same time, they are all profoundly aware of and concerned with jobs and material success. They are all in college to prepare for careers. (This might explain why I have not a single religion major in my intro class -- the vast majority of them are majoring in either the sciences or in fields like marketing and business and finance. A class full of Mad Men wannabes.) I was never ever ever as career focused as they are, either, at least not at their age. Perhaps I should have been. Perhaps if I had been I would not be making less money now than I have at any time since before I turned 30.
. . . Saturday night, Sunday morning worship only 12 hours away. I should probably be having some profound thoughts about God.
This is as close as it gets.