“Leap and the net will appear” –John Burroughs. Why I am writing about this right before Valentine’s Day? Loving is a leap of faith. When we love, we often move forward with our gift of love, not knowing for sure if the person will love us back. Yet we do it anyway. We know that we love the person and our gift is extended. I am certainly thinking of romantic love while writing this. How could I not? It is nearly Valentine’s Day.
Valentine’s Day is my parents’ wedding anniversary. My dad is gone, but my mom is still alive. They were so in love. Every year my dad would get my mom roses. He’d get one for each year they were married. By the time they’d been married 30 some years, mom told him to just go with a dozen. “It’s beginning to feel like a funeral home with all those flowers” she’d say with a laugh. They held hands, laughed, danced, talked, dated, and just loved—throughout their marriage.
This Valentine’s Day my hubby and I are apart because he had to go away on business. :-(. But oh am I thankful he has a job. We didn’t get married on (or even near) Valentine’s Day. We’ve been married quite awhile by now–almost 29 years. We dated off and on for 10 years before we got married. We were part of a wonderful group of friends–and I dated a number of his friends, and he mine. Yet we kept coming back together. Over the years we talked—a lot—about everything. We knew each other so very well by the time we got married. Even so, getting married was a leap. The act of marriage is an enormous leap of faith. You are trusting your heart and future to each other. I remember right before we exchanged our vows. We were standing at the front of the church; my bridesmaids were to my left and his groomsmen to my right. I looked towards each of them, as their faces were turned towards us. I was so nervous! As soon as we exchanged our vows, I could hear one of my girlfriends say “oh thank God”. Now THAT was funny. She knew me so well that she knew there were times when I had backed out of making a decision because of fear.
Our friends all prayed that God would give us the courage to make that final leap. Just as John Burroughs said, the net did appear. What net? The net of sustaining love. The net of years together, built one day at a time. The net of friends and relatives that intertwined their lives with ours. The net of God’s gracious love. It holds us up and keeps us together. We bless each other’s life the best we can.
I hope that as I go forward in my life I will remember to leap when I should and know that I will be uplifted and sustained.