Minute Meditations

Why Was There Extra?

woman looking at the stars | Photo by Steven Su on Unsplash

I am driving down the road toward my favorite walking site. It’s humid, but nothing like it was yesterday. I’m overwhelmed. I can’t even finish reading any articles right now. International news, social issues, issues of faith. Just as one violent or tumultuous news story recedes, the next one appears. I live in a scorched world. What can I bring? I try to be true in who I am, clear in my refusal to give in to cynicism. I don’t talk of Christ, though, not outside of church. I code-switch all the time. I offer freely, in many conversations, “I have a very deep faith,” but I don’t often mention Jesus. I keep him as a hidden indwelling, like my heartbeat; he’s there, soft—can anyone hear it? The fragments of love are not lost, scattered things, but are within me as I drive the S-shaped road I’ve driven down hundreds of times before. The miracle speaks into the scarcity in me, reaching at last to the place of enough. Why didn’t he create just exactly what everyone in the crowd that day needed? Certainly he could have. Why was there extra, so much? I think the unequivocal answer is: he never measures and weighs, doesn’t count, keep score, or tally what is given. He just gives. A feeling wells up and overtakes me: He just wants to feed all of us. And before I know it, I’m crying, envisioning the people around the world with our divisions disappearing. Billions and billions of us with no labels, no names, no groups, no separations. Just all of us, human beings, calling out together on this planet. Can you hear our canticle?

—from the book Gather the Fragments: My Year of Finding God’s Love
by Maureen O’Brien

Gather the Fragments by Maureen O'Brien

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