It’s a happy memory from an unhappy time, the winter of 1997. My children and I were still living in the house their father had left, and there was a significant snowstorm on a Saturday night. We woke up Sunday morning, and watched the cancellations on TV, but Large Church never, ever cancelled, so I knew there would be a service, and the choir or whatever members of it managed to get there would be singing. Singing in the choir was the focal point of my life then, the connection to God and community that kept me going from one week to the next as I lived into my new identity of almost not married.
I told the children, “We are walking to church.”
And so we bundled up, although I think the boys found the notion a bit shocking, and there was LP to cart along with us, age 19 or 20 months. We put her on a sled and pulled her.
But first we had to climb over the snowbank in front of our house. I was the tallest among us, just 5 feet. #1 Son would have been going on 11, Snowman just 6. We hauled ourselves over it and felt triumphant.
Then the real journey began.
At church, I remember the choir director shuffling through his files to find something we could sing, the odd group of us who had struggled our way mostly on foot. I found him upstairs making copies when I went to see if there would be any activity or Sunday School for the boys. Thank goodness there was someone to watch my little one in the Nursery!
(For a depressed person, this had been a super-human effort.)
I stood in the choir loft in the sparsely populated church feeling useful, singing with all my heart, over the snowbank for Jesus.