Unlike their Colgate-whitened pictures on postcards, the Mediterranean sands of Malaga are dark. Earthy. Scattered shells and rocks give a much rougher impression to the eye than the softness that greets the hand. Something sweet about the powder-fine texture calls my fingers to caress it, like the cheek of a child. Like the human soul. Aching to be touched under our weathered exterior.
Old and new footprints have left their marks, some easily erased, some deeper than that. Subject to the ever-changing clouds, sun, and wind, held in the predictable pattern of night and day, the temperature of the sand grows hot or cold. And I wish I didn’t so easily lose my peace, wish I wasn’t so affected by the shifting shadows of affection or aggravation.
But deeper than that, deeper than prying eyes and any human experience, the core of the earth is blazing hot. No science can measure the fire burning there, eternity in our hearts, the deep that always calls to Deep. Under all the daily comings and going, my soul just longs for You. The gravity You created continually pulls me towards You, or I would fly apart like a meteor into outer space. Sometimes, it’s close..
I press my back into the warm, dark sand, trying to feel Your heartbeat. Tanned, toned bodies stroll past me, fractured conversations drifting like shadows on the breeze, brushing agains my awareness for a moment or two. Each one a whole life with laundry and worries and secret dreams I’ll never know. But You intimately do. Here today, gone tomorrow; so brief is our existence on these shores….
“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
The moon and the stars, which You have ordained,
What is man that You are mindful of him,
And the son of man that You visit him?
For You have made him a little lower than the angels,
And You have crowned him with glory and honor.”
Roaring its ancient song, the cool blue ocean crashes into so many countries and continents, bring tears and prayers from Algeria to Morocco, from Spain to Israel…. and the cries from Syria, I sense them in this spray… Deaths of the people it has swallowed over time, life from the mariscos we gratefully enjoy. Looking deceptively calm, this sea surprises with her insistent suction into her depths, much like the depression I encountered in my beloved. And like I learned then, I’m standing still on the solid ground, not being swept away but rather lifting my eyes to You, who are higher and stronger and constant.
“For the mountains shall depart
And the hills be removed,
But My kindness shall not depart from you,
Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,”
Says the Lord, who has mercy on you.”
Generation after generation gazing into this sunlit horizon, until one day, time is no more. My eyes follow theirs as I meditate on that place where heaven kisses earth. Find me here, God, kiss me here where I am a grain of sand on your beach, and Your majestic Love is so evident in all you have made. Find me here, and bring my kiss on Your wind to those I love.
“Mercy and truth have met together;
Righteousness and peace have kissed.”