On October 2 of last year, my mother-in-law was diagnosed with breast cancer. She had a lumpectomy later that month, and then did the whole chemo/radiation cycle that has become such a part of many people’s lives. And despite still feeling a little more tired than she did, she’s doing really well. But more than that, she’s a survivor.
So of course, when she mentioned doing the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, my mental wheels started spinning. She planned on running it, and I decided I would run it with her. But later, she casually mentioned that she hadn’t felt up to training for the run, so she thought she’d walk instead. I made a new plan.
I learned that she was going to have a whole team of folks from her work that were going to walk with her, so my sister-in-law and I thought it would be fun to get a team of her family together to surprise her. We’ve plotted and planned for weeks...and somehow managed to keep the fact that 12 people were sneaking into town a secret.
She was positively blown away when we all met her just before the race... and it was one of the most beautiful moments I’ve ever seen.
"Graceland" is the name of my favorite song and album. It's by Paul Simon, but more importantly, it's what "home" sounds and feels like to me. We always listened to this album as we traveled from my home in Tennessee to my parents' childhood homes in Florida. But today, it's also a pretty good snapshot of my theology. Somewhere I really believe that the Christian journey is all about a wild trip to Grace-land. As I see it, Grace-land is the place where God is waiting to meet even us–with all the baggage and brokeness that we tote with us. Grace-land is the place where we will be received with open arms, even though our attempts at “getting it right” have been miserable failures at best. But, I think, every step we take is a step on the journey to Graceland.