A couple of weeks ago, we closed on our first home. It was incredibly exciting, making us feel responsible and immature and grown up and so very young all at the same time. Our lawyer was really helpful and informative to us first timers. And, as we made our way through that hilariously thick stack of papers to sign, we talked to him about his life - how long he had been doing closing, how he had an uncle who was an author and lived in Louisiana for a time, and how he was originally from the Boston area (the accent gave him away).
Of course when he mentioned Boston, we asked if he had any connection to the recent bombings. His two female cousins, who he said are more like sisters, were both near the sight of the explosions - one near the finish line who ran the other direction to safety and one who was working in the building that housed the second bomb. She is physically ok, but had to escape the chaos by climbing over what could only be described as casualties. At the time of our signing, she had not been back to work and had been seeking therapy. When we asked about Boston, you saw his demeanor change. You saw the heaviness of the experience rush over his face.
Though it was in the middle of an exciting time, it was actually a perfectly timed eye-opener. I don't think that I have had something like this that is so all-consuming. I can get so caught up in my lists of projects and purchases for the new house. I wake up thinking about what color I might want to paint the shelves in the loft, spend an embarrassing amount of time thinking about it, and change my mind a few days later.
I needed to be reminded that there are so many other more important things going on in our lives and in the lives of those that we love. There are loved ones preparing for babies or adjusting to life with new little ones. They are preparing to move far away or raising money for ministry or dealing with illnesses. They are celebrating big milestones or mourning losses.
This week is moving week. Slowly but surely, we are filling our cars with couch pillows and lamps and small appliances until our families come this weekend to help us with the big furniture. While I'm packing boxes, I'm remembering our lawyer's cousins and the lives of our friends and family and doing my best to live outside of my own little world and my crazy lists. The ones I love to write on graph paper.
So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.