surfing
Surfing at Indian Head Beach in Ecola State Park, Oregon coast, May 2018

“There they go, God.”
I think they are still mine.
I want to call after them,
“Wait! There are so many things I forgot to warn you about! You know you can always come back, right?”
But the words catch in my throat. They can’t hear me, anyway.  The future is roaring in their ears.
I want to wave both my hands high above my head, the signal to return to my side, to safety.
But I keep my arms still.  They can’t see me, anyway.  They are face forward to whatever adventures lie before them, picking their way through dangers and delights I can’t even imagine.
We gave them all we could so they would float, so they would fly. Now their equipment seems so flimsy, such a thin layer of protection. But if they carried more, they would be weighed down, unable to move at all.
If they ever were, they are no longer mine.  There is nothing more to say or do or give except this prayer, and so I cast it into the wind,
“Here they are, God.  I think they are still Yours.”
Amen.

____________________________________________________________________________________

Jennifer Garrison Brownell serves as pastor at First Congregational Church -UCC in Vancouver, Washington.  She contributed to the Revgals book There’s a Woman in the Pulpit and is the author of the not-really-about-a-triathlon memoir Swim, Ride, Run, Breathe: How I Lost a Triathlon and Caught My Breath. She blogs at There Is a River.


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