Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Times of transition

We had a wonderful Christmas. After a big family dinner at Izzy's on the 23rd, six of us went to the coast together. Doug's parents are doing well. Mo has regained much of his energy following the heart attack in October. Lois was cheery and generous as always. Doug's sister, Charis, came, and brought her good friend Andrea. They are both pastors. Then Doug and I completed the party.

The Oregon coast is beautiful and dramatic. We stayed at Worldmark in Seaside, and had an ocean view from our unit. The water was lapping around the historic turnaround there -- a concrete raised circle that touches the edge of the beach. Lois, who grew up in that area, said she has never seen the water so high. We walked along the promenade, played in the arcade, and ate very well from food we brought along and prepared in the full kitchen.

Andrea proved a great addition to the group. She was great to be around, interested and quick to lend a hand, generous and a lot of fun. We all told her she was welcome back. Her family is far away.

Everyone enjoyed the gift exchange. This year our rule was one gift from each to each. I was surprised and delighted to receive Absolute Sandman, vol. 1. The larger size and recoloring are gorgeous, and the stories are like old friends. I keep forgetting that these stories are horror. The gore, too, showed in greater detail. Yet there is a warmth and humanity -- after punishing Alex Burgess, Morpheus goes on to forgive Dee. Was he deliberately provoking Lyta Hall?

I'm only about half through the first volume. It will be hard to wait for the rest to come out in Absolute format. I'll likely reread the series from the graphic novels.

We will be at Mo and Lois' house for another week. Now that Christmas is over, my attention returns to the changes I am making in my life. How can I reach the people my life coaching can best serve? How do I do my work in the world, and receive the compensation that will let us live and continue our service? There are even harder questions: I feel our country has taken a wrong turn. Shall I lend my sway to restoring law and freedom? How?

The week between Christmas and New Year's often feels like found time to me. When the Christmas project is completed, and the New Year's projects are not yet ready to begin, there is a length of time ideal for planning changes. Shall I have new paths in 2007? How will we create income? What really is my most critical work to do in the world? How can I serve?

May you face your future with courage, and use this time of contemplation well.