Life, the Universe, and Everything

The windows have darkened into mirrors this cold evening, and as I stare into my own questioning face, life feels both very large and very small.

We spin out of control; so quickly we find ourselves looking into death, in an oncologist’s office or behind the wheel of a car or unexpectedly in our own bathtub. We burn so brightly in love for a kindred soul or in passion for our calling. And yet, each day is filled with so many little indignities: diapers to change, emails to be sent, errands to run hurriedly after dinner. So easily we become nothing deeper than a set of reactions to the entropic world around us.

God is this, too—bright and big in passion, but also small and undignified, susceptible to disappointment. How he has created with such passion and mirth the crazy world around us (snow and birds-of-paradise and narwhals…), and yet, how he has also come to us in sweating, stinking flesh, how he spat into the dirt and got his hands muddy in this very world he made.

I look out into the night and see nothing but myself. And in the smallness that is me, I can see a root, the smallest leaf, the thinnest thread that in some way is part of this huge, this insignificant thing that is the earth, that is history and future, that we refer to as “life.”

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