Monday, September 27, 2004
Walk With Me
"Sister!" he called, and I broke into a run. Oh, how could I ever catch up with his long-legged strides?
But he waited for me, laughing, and swooped me up into his arms. So strong, so loving.
"Come walk with me," he said. I leaned against him, feeling safe in the circle of his arm round my shoulder, feeling small and protected and loved.
"Sweet sister," he responded. And dropped a kiss onto the top of my head.
We walked. The sunset was coming on, and a gentle breeze grew stronger, wafting in off the ocean before us. No words - no need for them, not at the moment. Just the being together, as we walked. We walked.
"Little one," he said at last, stopping at the edge of the dry sand. He touched me, lifting my face towards his. "You know what you need to do, dear."
I sighed and leaned more deeply against him. "I'm afraid..." I whispered.
How gentle his smile, how soothing. "Dear sister," he breathed. "Would I ask of you the impossible?"
I smiled then. That word, impossible! "No, of course you wouldn't."
"Has Father ever asked you to do the impossible? Or will I?"
I smiled again, blushing for my silly fears. "No."
"Then walk with me," he said. His hand with the horrible ages-old scar in it made my hand look so tiny as I slipped mine into his.
Together we stepped out onto the strip of wet sand, which quickly became damper and damper as we drew nearer the ocean itself. That final step, the step that took us right to the water itself...
I quailed, and drew back a bit. But his hand bore me up. "Don't look at the water," he said, his voice so sweet, so gentle, so reassuring. "Look at me, dearheart. Only at me. Yes?"
The ocean was so vast, and I so small. "Oh, I can't!" I whimpered.
"Can't look at me?" my brother teased softly.
Ah! That drew my eyes to him, to his dear face towering above me.
"Will you..." I began. "Will you...carry me?"
His smile was so deep and loving and kind. "I always have before, dearheart, when we came this way. But you never saw the ocean those times. But now," and again he dropped a kiss onto my forehead, "now, beloved sister, it is time for you to learn to walk the way with me." He paused, the silence capturing my full attention to him. "I will never let go your hand, my love. Fear nothing, and keep your eyes on me. And we shall pass this way but once, and nevermore. Fear nothing. Be at peace."
He sighed, and his breath so sweet and cleansing washed over me from head to toe. "Come now, dear sister, and we shall walk."
I held his hand, his hand so great and strong and gentle. I breathed his breath in, and felt his courage flow into me. I took the first step...