Our recent change of address gave new meaning to the phrase, “move it or lose it.” We chose to lose, rather than move some lesser-loved books, donating them by armful, bag, and box in repeated trips to the Bay Village Library. On such one trip in the late afternoon, I followed through the doors behind a woman on a mission. I didn’t have to see her face to know she wasn’t happy.
We met again at those doors minutes later. Her mission had been the boy at her side who looked to be about 11. Even at 4:30 in the afternoon, his hair had that just-off-the-pillow tufting. I remembered that look on my own son. Then I heard the mom say, “Get your bike and put in Mimi’s trunk. NOW.” And the boy went to the bike rack, got on his bike, and began peddling. Toward Cahoon Road. In the opposite direction of the parking lot—and Mimi’s trunk.
She yelled, “We’re not waiting for you!”
More burdened now, I carted my second load into the library. Back through the doors again and walking to my car, I saw the boy coming toward me. He was peddling madly, riding over grass and mulched beds in a beeline to the parking lot. I was close enough to see his cheeks were wet with tears. He looked anguished. That’s when my sadness turned to pleading. Oh please, God, let them be there. Please let them be waiting. I like to think Mimi and the mom met the boy with open arms.
The scene reminded me of our sacred calling as Christ-followers. We wait. Ride in the opposite direction. We’ll wait. Defy us, deny us. We’ll still wait. In fact, we’re not just waiting, we’re walking toward you, looking for you. With open arms, ready to say, “Come on. Let’s go home.”