A Man of Faith

A photograph Jim took while hiking with our daughters (c) 2008

In The Inheritance of Loss, Kiran Desai wrote: “The passionflower was a glorious bizarre thing, each bloom lasting just a day, purple and white striped tentacles, half sea anemone, half flower—all by itself, it proffered enough reason for faith.”

My husband described himself to one of his sisters as a man of faith, if not necessarily of  ceremonies of the church into which he was baptized.

At his “Closing Ceremonies”–a name my husband created when asked by hospice personnel whether we had “made arrangements” (one of the fuzzier euphemisms we heard, although everyone immediately knows to what that term refers)–the Reverend discussed how each of us can pursue our journey on our own terms: “God understands.  God is big enough for that.”

As one of my favorite authors’ characters noted, “As the poet said, the pine trees may wave at the sky, but the sky does not answer.  It doesn’t answer men either, even though most of them have known the right prayers since they were children, the problem is finding a language that god can understand.”[1]  I think Jim found that language, whatever the nature of what may lie beyond.

When I held our first newborn son and touched his cheek I asked Jim if it made him believe in God.

No, he said, in his matter-of-fact way; it was but one of the things which every day confirmed his faith in life, in marriage, in family, in hope, in love–each of them to him a miracle of its own and on its own terms.

[1]   José Saramago, The Elephant’s Journey (New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2010), p. 175.

(c) 2012 Stephanie M. Glennon

Author: Stephanie

In her spare time, Stephanie works full-time, and then some, as an attorney. She has published articles and delivered talks in arcane fields like forensic evidentiary issues, jury instructions, and expert scientific witness preparation. She attended law school near the the banks of the Charles River and loves that dirty water; she will always think of Boston as her home. You are welcome to take a look at her Facebook author page, or follow @SMartinGlennon on Twitter and @schnitzelpond on Instagram. Bonus points for anyone who understands the Instagram handle. All content on this blog, unless otherwise attributed, is (c) 2012-2023 by Stephanie M. Glennon and should not be reproduced (in any form other than re-blogging in accordance with the wee Wordpress buttons at the bottom of each post) without the express permission of the domain holder.

3 thoughts on “A Man of Faith”

  1. to love and to be loved by a man like your Jim, to have the life that you made for and with each other. my God Quince what a blessing!
    continue writing. tell it all. you have my deepest condolence but more than that you have my sincerest appreciation for your talent. keep on keeping on .
    many hugs and much love.

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