When I first arrived in Nome, Sarah gave me a warm welcome gift
It was small and new, and she said she had just taken a shoot from a plant (that a friend gave her when she first arrived), and potted it for me. She said she didn’t know if it would survive.
I felt that this plantling kind of represented me, and I thought that if it could survive here, so could I. So I watered it, set it in the sunshine and watched it grow. It took a little while to take roots, but it did.
Then in the depths of winter, it almost died. It’s long, spindly stems stretched out toward the window, searching for light, it’s leaves became pale, almost transparent; most of it died.
I was so afraid it was going to die, because I was struggling, and I had already seen a few people get burned out or not make it here. What if I couldn’t make it? What if I couldn’t hold on? Because the truth is, at the end of the day, “we are not as strong as we think we are.” (one of my favorite Rich Mullins songs)
Then the days began rapidly growing longer, and the sun showed her beautiful face more, and this little plant flourished in light and beauty and music and love. Now it’s stronger and heartier and I’m sure it will survive. And if it can, so can I!
We are frail, we are fearfully and wonderfully made
Forged in the fires of human passion
Choking on the fumes of selfish rage
And with these our hells and our heavens, so few inches apart
We must be awfully small and not as strong as we think we are.