|Rappelling ropes bound to a tree at Giant City State Park|
"Bind us together with shoelace and leather! Bind us together, O Lard!" If you've ever lived in the South, you know what I mean. It may be a deep-fried life, hot as hell sometimes and crisp with promise and not much else, but at least you can depend on your friends and family through good as well as bad times. They lift you up instead of dragging you down like a millstone around your neck.
|Rappelling ropes bound to people below|
|SAM on a trail in Giant City State Park, March 15, 2013|
No, it's not really the "lard" that flavors life in the South. And, yes, I'm including life in Southern Illinois too. There is something mysterious and wonderful about that place.
I moved there the summer before my junior year in high school, a confusing and vulnerable time for any young person. Life could have taken a wrong turn for me, but somehow things worked out. Everywhere I looked and listened, people were talking about Jesus. "Jesus Saves!" signs were posted on telephone poles and trees alongside country roads we took to school and work each day. My dad would poke a little fun at them and remark "Oh yeah? Moses invests!" He didn't mean any disrespect. The move meant big changes for him too. Back then, at least to me, he seemed to take everything in stride. But he was probably just as confused and vulnerable as I was. I think we all are at one time or another. We might think we can handle it alone, but we can't.
Ties that bind us together: they're not lard, and they aren't shoelace and leather. Joking aside, somehow, somewhere we find the ones that fit--if we're prayed for, lifted up, blessed by and with family and friends.
Thank you, blogging friends, for sharing the past five years with me. I've enjoyed your good company along the way.