This week I found a penny. When I find pennies, I always look at the year and determine what was happening for me at the time. The year was 1975. I had lost contact with Giovanni. We could not bridge a relationship with an ocean between--we faded from each others' lives. I was heartbroken and trying to make sense of my reality without him. I wrote constantly--the page like a window in the wall of my tattered emotions. That year was also when I was born-again--Jesus made real in my life--His salvation and healing another window in the wall.
I rubbed the raised numerals of the date on the coin with my thumb and realized that from 1975 until the present, there was a forty-year span of time. A generation. The time it took the Israelites to cross the desert into the Promised Land. Somehow I sensed I'd had a crossing over into another better place, Giovanni now back in my life--the first man I loved and the last.
Several months ago I wrote a poem for a friend who had just turned forty. I pulled out my copy of the poem and read it again. The poem could be for me as well.
Egypt is a distant memory,
Although you remember
Looking up into cerulean skies, craving deliverance--
The arid beauty ironic contrast with such brutality.
Then the waters parted, your feet set
Upon another geography.
You shielded your eyes against the stinging sand.
Sometimes your mouth watered as you could
Almost taste the leeks from that place you'd left.
Manna sufficed. Honey from rocks.
Day after day.
Night upon night the fire. Survival.
And now a generation passed,
Your mind and heart poised for new territory.
Exploration of this moist, green land awaits.
Grace. Grace to it.
Crowned with favor.