D.L. Mayfield

living in the upside-down kingdom

Filtering by Tag: somali thanksgiving

day 25

ok so I missed a day. I guess it was because I was so surrounded by people, which is how holidays should be? 

Today I am so grateful. I had my third and final thanksgiving meal of the season. Of course we invited so many different refugee families and of course they didn't show up (every year is different--sometimes too many come and there is not enough food, usually you make too much and nobody comes or nobody eats). Except two girls who are spending the weekend with us, two girls I have known for so very long--one, since she was born, the other since she arrived in America when she was four. 

Build a bigger table, is what a friend of mine likes to say. For the first time in my history I live in a space with an extra bedroom, where we can have people crash with us for the weekend or longer. I'm good at many things but as an extroverted introvert sharing my own private space is very hard. We are easing into it. Easing into the next gloriously uncomfortable thing God will ask us to do. All God ever does is talk to us. All God ever does is say how infinite his love is, how wild it will make our lives turn out to be. 

I'm full to bursting on cream and butter and sugar and PEOPLE. Glorious, horrible, complicated, abusive and abused, precious and light-filled, full of sorrow and shame and thanksgiving people.

I hope you are, too. 



beautiful, difficult, radical thanks

i woke up this morning to a quote by Craig Greenfield: "we cannot separate the beauty and goodness of radical hospitality with its difficulty". i am feeling this today. i am grateful and excited for a day of cooking and eating with dozens of neighbors--introducing people who have never had the traditional meal to turkey and mashed potatoes, and my all-important sugar pie. our apartment is strung with twinkle lights, we are listening to sufjan christmas, and we have decided that one of our new traditions is to eat cinnamon rolls and play with legos in the morning. it's a beautiful life.

and also: i am missing my sisters and my mom and my dad something fierce. i will try not to think about it, all the rest of this day, this month, this holiday season. i have a bit of the ache that so many carry with them all the time. i look at old pictures and i cry; not just out of sadness, but out of all the goodness that makes me miss it so much. my mother, my sisters, my dad: they are the ones who first modeled radical hospitality to me, made me the person i am now. they showed me that family goes beyond blood, that there is always room at the table for more, that traditions are beautiful but so is turning everything upside-down for a king and a kingdom which can hold us all.

our mission organization has written out some beautiful commitments that we meditate on throughout the year. we just recently finished up thinking and praying about our commitment to celebration. here are some of the thoughts that we will be carrying with us through out this day, this week, this season, this long wait until everything is made new.

I will celebrate the light of Christ

in a world of darkness

the life of Christ

in a culture of death

the liberty of Christ

in a kingdom of captivity

and the hope of Christ

in an age of despair

I will rejoice always and in everything give thanks.

amen. happy thanksgiving.

thankful that i miss my sisters so very much.

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