Saturday, January 9, 2010
A Day in the Life...
Another busy day. I noticed a few days ago that the tear in the far corner of my sleeping room was finally getting large enough that I needed to repair it. I worked on that stupid tear from sun up to sundown today. The fabric of the tent is so heavy that, though it provides wonderful warmth at night, and even drowns out any outside noise, it is a bugger to sew through! I finally finished and after soaking my hands in warm water, I felt the strength return just enough for me to jot a few notes in my diary.
You would think that after twenty-four years - yes, twenty-four - I would be used to tent repairs and living the life of nomads. I should have known in my first year of marriage that Abram loved to move around, but twenty-four years ago next month we left Ur and we've been on the move ever since. About six years ago, I did convince him to leave dwellings with some of our excess servants in the several places in the land that Abram enjoys to see the most and that has enabled me to travel with him more frequently. He has built me beautiful yet temporary homes. Still, I shouldn't complain.
But Hagar and Ishmael continue to be a hinderance to my joy.
The boy is thirteen now and is starting to assert his authority as Abram's sole heir. I try to explain this to Abram but he doesn't seem to have an ear to my criticism. It must be my time of life. I don't really struggle with negativity, except when it comes to them. Hagar now lives in the south, but I don't trust her and won't let Abram travel there alone, so when I do go, she is cordial but there is always a look in her eye that reminds me of my loss and her gain. Ishmael is not a bad boy, I guess, he's just a constant reminder of what I was never able to give Abram myself.
As for Abram and me, we are aging well and I actually think he prefers to travel with me. We talk together all day and God has graciously increased our flocks and our help. We really have no concerns. The locals are friendly at all our dwellings and they seem to recognize Abram as a man blessed by God. Though they don't quite understand it, they respect it.
My greatest concern for Abram is that though we see God's hand, it's been over thirteen years since God met with him. We feel His presence, and perhaps as long as we live respectable lives, He feels no need to intercede. Abram has his heir that God promised and since Hagar claims that an angel gave her the same promises about Ishmael's future that God gave Abram about his future heir, I will submit to His will. Is it what I thought it would be? Not quite. I thought I would hold my own child on my lap, but I am decades past that dream. I thought we'd fill the home with children if we followed God, but His plan has only included one child. I thought I was the object of God's affection, but it must be only Abram. I thought that Ishmael would call me mother, but I blew that opportunity years ago.
I am no longer sad about being barren. I understand that this is God's plan for my life. I can no longer apologize to Abram for something that I cannot control. But still, maybe once a year, I'll have a dream about being a real mother. When I awake, sorrow floods my soul and it takes me days to recover because the dream stirs up feelings I had forgotten. But life goes on and I am committed to pouring myself into my husband, traveling with him and living a contented life in the land God has given us.
It's a good land and he's a good man.
What do I have to regret?
Tomorrow I will go to town and replace our everyday dishes with some beautiful new ones. I have this thing about pottery and the locals are so talented. Perhaps some new fabric will have arrived from the east.
It will be a good day. I can feel it in my old bones.
(Time to return our thoughts to Genesis, gals...hope to see all of you on Tuesday!)