(Originally posted on my CaringBridge page on 1/30/13)
Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art … it has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that gives value to survival.
C. S. Lewis
I’ve always been intrigued by the powerful allure of sea glass. Though the shimmering, delicate beauty of the colors is hypnotic, my fascination lies more in the mystery of its origin . . . the story behind each unique piece. Each frosted gem has been transformed, worn smooth from years of tumbling through the sea’s natural sandblasting action, tides, waves, and currents. Over a decade ago, I even began a “love affair” with a novel engrained on my heart—sea glass being at the forefront (one of many bucket list adventures I someday hope to check off!) Finding treasured sea glass along the shore reveals the elaborate, unique characteristics in each piece—all beautiful … whether transparent or opaque, individually carrying with it from its journey….a story.
I think of all the many people who have drifted into my life, whether for a season or a lifetime—amazing pieces of sea glass in the form of relationships I’ve cherished and friendships that stand the test of time. All have stamped yet another memory, experience . . . adventure to my passport of life.
Moving around quite a bit growing up has always made it hard to answer the question: “Where did you grow up . . . where were your roots laid down?” My sister and I have often had conversations about this very thing. Though we have occasionally coveted those who have only known one home town their entire life, we much more value the depth of experience and relationships that may not have been as rich for us, had familiarity and comfort in one place set the tone of our childhood. In truth, we’ve always had roots—only instead of being planted in a “location,” they were deeply planted in the love for each other—closely bonded through the changes and challenges new situations and experiences presented.
These days I’ve been in awe, marveling at the beautiful “sea glass” in my life. Like the best pieces of beach treasure, many of you truly sparkle in the light.
Tonight, I found myself crying (in joy) yet again . . . from my mailbox treasures. These beautiful, heartfelt cards arriving in the mail—are not only giving me cherished moments of encouragement for today, but future rainbows for tomorrow . . . little reminders of God’s promises for my life. I am saving each note and card to place in a special, (beautiful) mosaic box I hope to one day soon create with sea glass from a beach-combing adventure.
I am beyond appreciative . . . all the time spent checking in on me, the texts, the notes here on CaringBridge, e-mails and beyond generous gifts have brought me to tears—allowing me to feel the love of my treasured relationships both new and old, giving value to my survival (thank you C.S. Lewis for your eloquence)! Words alone can never express what my heart has felt through your thoughtful actions and genuine love.
Let’s face it, we all start out as shards of broken glass . . . wildly tumbling through the sea of life, and only through the refining process of turbulence in the storms, even crashing on rocks and coral—do our edges become smooth—our story become meaningful.
Isaiah spoke of the potter and His clay: “Yet You, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.” (Isaiah 64:8)
God uses His clay made from dirt . . . his shards of glass tossed at sea, to do an amazing work in each of us. It is only in the fire . . . or the raging storms where we can truly be refined, edges smoothed out, vessels shining—for His greater purpose.
As for my beautiful sea glass . . . THANK YOU ALL for washing up on my shore . . .