Unbroken Peace




Two of our granddaughters have been with us this week.   Maddie and Jordann fill the house and our hearts with energy and laughter.  They love playing with their cousin Skye,  being in our garden, feeding the fish, gathering herbs, picking flowers, and tending plants.  Maddie helped me make pumpkin waffles. Jordann drew everyone’s picture.  We sang songs from The Sound of Music and then watched the movie.  They love to play board games with Joe and me.  They like to take out the Story Cube box and make up stories from the picture cubes.  But they didn’t even know what a powerful story they were telling when I took these photographs.  They asked to visit our church’s prayer garden, so we did.  In one corner of that garden is a bench and a sandy area that contains 12 smooth stones and a clay marker engraved with the word “Peace.”  When we arrived on this afternoon, one of the first things they saw and exclaimed about was that the marker was broken.

As I watched, Maddie put the pieces back together and smiled as she read “peace.” Then they began picking up the river stones and trying to dust the sand and gravel off, but decided to take them over to the small stream nearby and dip them in the flowing water. One at a time, the stones were washed and brought to put in a circle around the Peace marker.


When all 12 stones were clean and in place, I asked them if they would like to use the stones to help them say what they are thankful for.  Without a moment’s hesitation, each girl walked the circle, saying, “I am thankful for…”  They named each other,  their Daddy and Mommy, grandparents, aunts and uncles and cousins, their cat and dog and home, the trees and flowers.

Their story is fresh and new, because they are. But it is also an ancient story, one that speaks of acknowledging brokenness, restoration, transformation, and redemption.  And that this prompts deep gratitude.

I am thankful for unbroken peace.   And Maddie and Jordann.


4 thoughts on “Unbroken Peace

  1. Aah, Mary Ann, you have done it again!

    What a fresh, life-giving, breath-of-life piece you have written here around your grandchildren. I love the way you weave together a reflection on gratitude and brokenness. I love your description of the day.

    This piece will make a nice memory for your grandchildren some day. For me, today, your writing evokes a deep “aah,” accompanied by a deep breath. It softens me in the midst of a bad day at the office and reminds me of what is important.


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