Tuesday, October 04, 2005

One Day

When Amy and I were first married I wondered what my role would be in my step-children's lives. I eventually decided that I would be the "parent" who would lighten things up. I'm not sure how well I did, but the kids turned out okay despite me.

When Lee, Ana, and John' moved in, I recognized quickly what my role was going to be - I was going to be the guy who reminded them that we all had to live one day at a time for a while...perhaps a long while. After all they've been through there are a myriad of things to consider, school, jobs, transportation, government aid, future plans...the list is endless, if we allow it to even form into a list. It can be and is overwhelming despite our combined best efforts, so I am often heard saying, "Let's focus on what we can do today."

Today we finalized plans for Lee and Ana to go back to New Orleans to salvage what they can from their home. They have no idea what to expect and we've tried to prepare for the best and the worst. I suspect this will be a critical juncture...a collision of time and emotion...of loss, mourning...and movement. It will be a painful step forward which can't be accomplished without going back...for one day.

It took a lot of prayer, communication and strong hearted individuals to pull it off, but I'm feeling fairly confident we've got it mapped out. It wouldn't be possible without the financial help of ReallivePreacher readers, and the amazingly generous gift of time and travel by a couple I've yet to meet from Athens, Texas. Amy, Gordon and I will put Lee and Ana on a bus to Baton Rouge and then - some 12 hours later - the couple from Athens will pick them up and drive them into the sea of unknown...back to their home in New Orleans.

The plan is to get in, get what they can, and get out before curfew. One day to face their fears, grab hold and turn their backs on their memories, and then turn around toward to a new life and a lot of uncertainty. That will be a long day, even for those of us staying here awaiting their return...but it too will only be one day.

Sometime Saturday they'll drive back into San Antonio, no doubt road worn and emotionally spent. Ana told me this afternoon she knows she's, "gonna be mad" when she sees her home. I suspect the gamut of her feelings will cover an almost unfathomable spectrum...in an instant...in a day.

The couple from Athens will spend Saturday night with us but will likely have to leave before church in order to be able to meet the demands of their own lives. Theirs is an astounding sacrifice of time and energy of which the arduous driving is only a small portion. Their role providing emotional and spiritual support during that ride back to San Antonio may well start the formation of the cornerstone of the Gomez family's future. A lot may be riding on that ride...that one day.

The body of Christ...in motion...one day at a time.

It's startles me sometimes.

One day at a time sweet Jesus
That's all I'm asking from You
Just give me the strength to do ev'ryday
What I have to do
Yesterday's gone sweet Jesus
And tomorrow may never be mine
Lord help me today show me the way
One day at a time