New Moon Smiling

All I could hear were the sounds God’s world makes

by Larry Kinard

A new moon, an orange crescent, smiled as it settled into an ink black flat lake. It was the moon and a whisper from Marty that made me stop. You should have been there.

On most nights at our lake home, after Marty has settled in bed, I go sit outside on our west-facing deck to enjoy the night sounds and cool air. I almost always take my iPad and let my mind check out as I play an inane game.

That night I could feel her saying, “It’s okay to feel content. It’s okay to feel right with the world.”

When there is not much of a moon and the lights are low in our house, it is pitch dark on the porch. You can see the lights on the docks reflecting off the water. White, blue, orange and red lights shimmer on the bank across the lake, evidence of homes, boat docks, towers and pumps.

This night the moon caught my eye. Too often, much too often, I have seen something notable and then moved on to the next thing. That behavior drove Marty nuts. She would tell me, stop, look, enjoy, revel in the moment, be in the here and now and feel life at that moment. She would say it’s okay to stop and feel content for a minute. Mostly I didn’t listen to her.

This time I listened to my inner Marty voice. This time I put my iPad down. I walked to the middle of the deck and watched the beaming crescent dip into the dark flat lake. I looked up and saw the stars you can only see when you are away from city lights, the stars so far away the light you see is old. It was cool, it was clear; it was so quiet all I could hear were the sounds God’s world makes.

Even when Marty isn’t right beside me she is still in my head. It’s spooky sometimes. That night I could feel her saying, “It’s okay to feel content. It’s okay to feel right with the world.”

In spite of what so many want us to believe, this is an amazing world in which we live. There is beauty, light, and life all around us, and we truly live in the most amazing, safest, richest time in history. I know, I know, there are wars, rumors of war, hunger, poverty, and true tragedy all around us, and we must confront all of that. But life, today, in this era, while complicated, is incredible.
Marty has had two strokes that changed our lives, so she and I know a little about tragedy. But that smiling moon the color of which I am at a loss to describe, that moment when Marty’s always-present spirit told me to look, to feel, to breathe, to forget everything else—moments like that show me that God is with us. God was smiling at all of us and saying it’s okay to feel good.

And Marty was there whispering in my ear to remember how important it was to see and feel that smile and be nowhere but in that moment.

Photo by Collins Dillard

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