09 March 2012

5 Minute Friday ~ Empty

I drive past their house... the curtains are pulled, no air conditioner hums, all windows are darkened and tightly closed... that never-ending always annoying dust on the terrace is undisturbed.

All this is evidence of a reality that hurts. Their home lies empty. Once full, comforting and inviting, always enticing me to just pop in for a visit, it is now nothing more than an empty shell - and now, like the dust, I'm settling... settling for treasured memories instead of life moments.

My heart feels a little bit empty, too.

And that is a part of this missionary life... life as an expat.

Sometimes the very things you love the most are also the very things that hurt the most; the things that fill your cup and cause it to bubble over can drain most completely.

Hellos are fun - and as I meet and am privileged to call so many, from so many different worlds, friend, I look forward even more to delighting in the next hello opportunity. Choosing and learning to love another, one who is different, who has different priorities and perspectives and can share a whole new store of life experiences grows my heart, stretching me into a better lover of people.

But those goodbyes hurt - oh, do they hurt. Especially when you know that goodbye might be for a very long time... that it might, in fact, be for forever... That place in your heart carved by another person echoes hollow because they are no longer a regular part of your life. Sometimes that empty feels like a longing for a Wendy's Frosty and is filled with the anticipation of some "next time" somewhere in the future; other times it intensifies, becoming an enormous vacuum threatening the collapse of everything around, all that touches it.

Driving past, once again, leaves me wanting...

another shared cup of coffee... or bowl of ice cream,
another laugh over silly kid stories,
another occasion to unite hearts in prayer,
another opportunity to just be we.

...the gift of just a little bit more time, together...

Feeling empty - yet I'm thankful.
It reminds me of the fulfilling presence of precious people I love...

...and all those memories that take the edge off those pangs.


  1. I can feel the ache of longing in your words. The better the memories the bigger the hole when people move on.

    1. we just had some friends leave - the very day i wrote that. thankful for the time we shared... thankful for the memories... even the hole and ache is something to be treasured - just as you said - because of what it signifies.

  2. yes. those empty places and spaces where love once filled. I have felt this too, you speak of it well.

    1. i'd like to think, i hope ~ love still fills... just not one anchored in real life hugs, cups of coffee at the same table at the same time, hands held... i'm sure you know what i mean. in this day and age, somehow that love has to be communicated through emails and skype chats and memories and phone calls. it doesn't fill and satisfy the same way...

      i'm wondering if it might be an appetizer for what heaven will be someday.

  3. Always my consolation: someday we'll have forever. It doesn't fill the hole, but give hope that the ache will end.

    1. not looking forward to that all too soon time of driving past your empty place... neither are my kiddos... especially with the uncertainty of our future.

  4. Great post, Richelle, and so true!

  5. we can feel it too, Richelle, because you described it so well.

    1. kind words, jill...

      you know, quebec and many wonderful friends there have left an empty space in our hearts too. we still wonder if some day, the Lord may allow us to go back ~


Stop in for a chat! I love to hear what you have to say ~


Related Posts with Thumbnails