Centering Way

Tending the Soul: Incarnation

Tending the Soul: Incarnation

By Ben Edwards

It was a cold morning. A few passersby glanced at us, some confused, others clearly offering compassion and sympathy. We were gathered in the driveway of my neighbors, where they had lost their son to an unexplainable act of violence only a week earlier. It happened on Halloween.

He was handing out candy – something he didn’t think he would be able to do that night because of his work schedule. He was grateful that someone covered his shift so he could take part in the family tradition. His dad was inside putting more candy in the large bowl when shots rang out. What had just happened didn’t register immediately. It was only when his son’s girlfriend came in screaming, “They shot him!” that he realized the incredible horror of the situation.

Tending the Soul: The Elusive "I"

Tending the Soul: The Elusive "I"

Eminem got his big break in the hip hop world during my freshman year in high school. I instantly fell in love with his music and image, which eventually led me to cut my hair very short and bleach it blonde in an effort to communicate to those around me that I had an inner “Slim Shady.”

The next year I discovered the gift of 90s punk rock. I listened to Blink 182, Green Day, and MxPx on repeat. I also bought a pair of Dickies pants, a pair of Converse Chuck Taylors, and several ironic small t-shirts at the Goodwill. Everyone I met knew that I was a punk rock kid, that I was in a punk rock band, and that I didn’t like their “preppy music.”

Tending the Soul: Releasing Life

Tending the Soul: Releasing Life

Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” Having said this, he breathed his last.   - Luke 23:46
 

As we talked together about parenting our girls, a friend asked, “At what age did you start releasing control over your daughter’s life?”

I thought for a moment and then asked him to clarify: “Do you mean my illusion of control over my daughter’s life?” We laughed, thinking about middle school. I thought for a bit more. “Maybe when she was a week old?”

Maybe earlier than that. By the time my daughter was hours on the earth, a wave of awareness stunned me – that I cherished her life more than my own. How was it possible that such unfathomable love nestled itself into the little dip between my chest and shoulder? Five pounds of hunched up creature, no bigger than a skinned rabbit, now consumed me - drawing more love out of my pores than I knew I had. When the nurse scurried her off for a procedure my breath halted. My tiny daughter was so terribly fragile. Would she be ok? I let her go (as if the nurse had even asked permission). Of course my little one was ok, like seven billion babies on the planet have ended up ok.