Friday, August 19, 2011

What is Real?/MANN

It is no secret that home and hearth is close to one’s heart. Doug and I have just returned from travelling east to Nova Scotia. Regardless of the many resources I packed, countless times in the beginning I thought of checking something on that top shelf at home, or thinking about a writing deadline, or wondering if I’d returned that last call left on the answering machine.

It’s usually very difficult for me to turn off one lifestyle and switch to another but after a few days; I managed to surrender to reading, knitting, writing long hand while sitting in the RV passenger seat. I think the only consistent action was the sound “AWH” in response to Canada’s kaleidoscope of scenery.

Always on a trip, I hope to experience something that I haven’t done before. It was no different this time. When I was invited to go searching for Sea-glass – I readily accepted. Walking along the shore of North Sydney, N.S., it was not difficult to spot the odd green and blue pieces. The white ones were easier to see among the many pebbles. Over a period of an hour, I had gathered a lovely collection of a variety of colours. I was so proud of myself and even as I walked I had visions of covering a patio table with my precious little pieces of glass to look like stained glass.

“This one isn’t Sea-glass,” my daughter said.

“Oh! Are you sure?” I asked.

“That’s a stone,” she said.

“Well, it looks like Sea-glass to me.” I turned it over. “I’m going to use it with the rest. It’s pretty.”

“It’ll look different,” she warned.

I knew she was right, yet I also knew that the rich brown colour of the ‘so-called’ Sea-glass would look splendid in the midst of the brilliant greens, blues and whites of the true Sea-glass.

I conceded of course, wanting to have a true reflection of my evening’s search for Sea-glass. Later as I washed the small pieces they seemed to blink in their brilliance that my choice was a good one.

In hindsight, I wonder how many times we blend the real with the imaginary just to get the results that we want. Maybe a little piece of phoney glass in a collection isn’t as easily seen as an action or behaviour that is not the real thing. I suppose there in lies the grace of God to help us see the truth of our errors.

Furthermore, I think my little pieces of beautiful glass truly represent how waste and brokenness can be transformed into brilliance and goodness. A little like the times that we let ourselves or God, down, yet through God’s grace and mercy, we continue to shine through our life. , , although we know there’ll still be the odd stone among our gems.

A friend teased that one of the little pieces was probably a piece of china from the Titanic. Could be, I thought. Certainly gave me pause to think . . . a little more about all of this. However, I take the bottle of Sea-glass home with me and put it on the shelf to remind me of a precious experience.

Donna Mann

1 comment:

Peter Black said...

Donna, thanks for sharing these delightful reflections of your beach-combing for sea-glass story. It was evidently great fun and made for a really good spiritual application.

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