Yesterday’s mail was a bit bizarre.  Not that I received anything odd, in and of itself.  Here’s the rundown:

  • I received an expected and much anticipated small package from my daughter, a foreign exchange student who currently resides in the Czech Republic.
  • Secondly, the mail contained a large envelope addressed to my daughter from Reed College.
  • And lastly, I received a letter from Asbury Theological Seminary addressed to Rev. & Mrs. James Monck, II.

I was quite happy to receive the package from my daughter.  It contained, amongst other things, a key chain. There’s a back story to this, and it completes something that’s been missing, so it was a joy to get.

The large envelope from Reed was a surprise.  Mainly because Reed recently sent one of those small mailers many colleges and universities send out when your child is a high school upperclassman.  Reed College became familiar to me after watching the movie, based on Donald Miller’s book, Blue Like Jazz.  If you already know all this, I apologize.  If you don’t, read on.  Reed College is located in Portland, Oregon.  It’s quite a different institution of higher learning.  Basically, its reputation places it in the liberal category, which in my experience is where we often place things that are a bit out of the ordinary.  I don’t know enough about it to say whether I’d see it as a good place for my daughter or anyone’s daughter to attend.  And I have no reason to actually believe my daughter will show any interest in attending there.  That’s another topic for another day.

I suppose I need to phone Asbury and ask they change their mailing list.  I hate to be the bearer of the news that yet another M.Div. recipient and wife have ended their marriage.

I suppose what struck me about yesterday’s mail was what each of the pieces of mail represent.  My daughter growing up, achieving a goal and living a dream.  The realization that once she returns from this journey as an exchange student, it won’t be long until she’s choosing a college.  And she could, quite possibly, end up miles and miles away from me, once again.  A reminder, yet once more, that twenty years after the seminary graduation party, I am not exactly living the life I expected I would be living.

Sometimes life’s ironies are comical.  Sometimes they are just plain sad.  And other times, well, they are reminders that everything is alright and moving forward.  Which is really how life is supposed to be.  I am a little thankful though, that today is Sunday.  No mail delivery today.  No bills, no creatively designed cards from Vanderbilt trying to lure my daughter south.  And no letters addressed to people who don’t really even exist anymore.

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