"I guess I never realized they circumcised him on the eighth day." Jane tilts her head, squints, half-smiles. She clatters her spoon, her elbow propped on the table.
"Oh, yeah," I say. I trace the feather-thin page of her Bible. "You know why right?"
"'Cause of the vitamin K."
"When you circumcise a baby they can actually bleed to death. Vitamin K makes your blood clot and form a scab. It stops the bleeding. There is more vitamin K in your blood on the eighth day than any other time."
"Oh." She nods. Her forehead wrinkled, eyes tranquil. Her gray t-shirt, blue jeans, I watch an exchange of information, a tipping of dominos there behind her eyes. The small pebbles of an avalanche shift and skitter. I note how important moments often happen in casual clothes.
"So the chances of dying are way less," I say. We hold each other's eyes. All that pleasant blue, I smile. "All those thousands of years they just did it on the eighth day 'cause God said to, but he actually had a reason." I raise my eyebrows, face drawn up in tenderness. My coffee cup lukewarm, I palm it, take a sip. Jane troughs a skiff of egg nog into her oatmeal.
"One thing I've found," she says, "is that God always has a reason for what he says." She pops the carton spout back in place. A drip of nog seeps out. "And if he has a reason," she says, "it's a good one, not just like he feels like it. Like how they circumcise on the eighth day because of the vitamin K." She circles her spoon in the oatmeal, absent-minded, as if realization had been there all along.
"Yup." I swirl my coffee, circle up all the fine grounds in the bottom. I slosh them down. "So what's your take-away?" I say.
"Obey," she says, "even if you don't understand 'cause if someone you respect said it, there is a reason." We nod, smile affection into each other's eyes. Obedience. Respect. A simple horizon.
Bible study. We do Bible study over oatmeal and coffee, egg nog and blue jeans, and end up with the horizon of the world right there in our lap.
4934. A dear friend gives birth. James Michael is born.
4935. I thrift shop with the kids and return with more books for the library.
4936. Mom arrives safely in Kenya.
4937. We repurpose an old wardrobe as a game and puzzle hutch.
4938. We rearrange the library.
4939. Craig buys me new slippers. They keep me warm to the shins. I feel like an eskimo.
4940. We buy new socks for the kids.
4941. Lucy and I go on a date. We run errands. She embodies peace. Peace. I wonder if this is the soft side of courage.
4942. The kids make us apple crisp.
4943. We play Yahtzee as a family.
4944. I knit the last of my purple sweater. I finish it with black glass buttons.
4945. Craig builds a huge fire almost every day, makes our house a tropical paradise.
4949. The girls and I go shopping for yarn and return to find Craig and Jack have hung the new chalkboard down by the fireplace.
4950. We celebrate Reformation Day. My dad comes for dinner, tells us stories of God's great work.