As I write this, I am 34,000 ft above the ground, winging my way to Denver and eventually, Aspen, CO. I'm traveling with my 20 yr old daughter, Hannah, who is working there for 5 weeks this summer. Thanks to American miles, I will get to see where Hannah's living and maybe get a taste of what she'll be doing. For the two days I'm there, we get to tour around a bit, and hike the much praised Maroon Bells area.
So obviously, she and I are out of Bolivar this week - but we aren't the only ones of our clan on the move. Faith and Elizabeth left at 6 a.m. this morning (the 12th), for Toledo, Ohio. They are with the youth of our church on a mission trip to the inner city there. Mary Grace is not out of Bolivar, but she's out of the house, as she is at tennis camp at Southwest Baptist University until Friday. Luke left last week for his summer job in Fayetteville, AR. That leaves David and Lou to hold down the fort for a few days. They are, I'm sure, watching the Mavs-Heat game as I type.
As I've contemplated our being apart, even for this short time, I thought about a line I read in the book, Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy. Bonhoeffer's brother, Walter, is leaving home to fight in WWI. (Thankfully, nothing quite so dramatic with us.)
They took Walter to the station the next morning, and as the train was pulling away, Paula Bonhoeffer ran alongside it, telling her fresh-faced boy: "It's only space that separates us."
That thought speaks to me. It reminds me that the real ties that bind are not broken by great distances. It reminds me of the truth that there is no distance in prayer. And that prayer is no small thing.
So here, I'll virtually run beside their planes, trains, and automobiles as they are gone on their little trips (and eventually their big trips). I'll remind them (and me) with the words of Paula Bonhoeffer, "It's only space that separates us."