Friday, February 19, 2016

Fine Linen

Friday in the First Week of Lent

The Lord put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God;
many shall see, and stand in awe,
and put their trust in the Lord.

Psalm 40:3

I check the linen tablecloth for just the right amount of dampness; it will soon be ready for the hot iron and I already anticipate the smooth crisp result.

I don’t remember when I learned to iron linen, but it was long before I inherited this cloth from my grandmother. It is the smallest of the four I now own, and it is on its way to a new home. I haven't used it for such a long time, that I decided to pass it on to someone else who would welcome it, enjoy it, give it renewed life.

Sending it along the stream is a kind of letting go, but it is also an invitation to newness. Newness for the recipient, myself, the cloth. It makes no sense to hold onto something, devotedly stored but never used, when it could live its purpose. And in releasing it, space is created. And more than space. Possibility. Generosity. Connection.

I know the hands that will accept this gift, so I know the cloth will be lovingly received. As will its legacy. As will I. And perhaps someday it will get passed along again. The thought brings a song into my heart as I feel the embrace of the One who is the beginning of every good gift and every gracious letting go.