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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The search for full moon eyes

By Dan Sidey

I came upon this poem recently:

With That Moon Language

Admit something:

Everyone you see, you say to them,

"Love me."

Of course you do not do this out loud; Otherwise,

Someone would call the cops.

Still though, think about this,

This great pull in us to connect.

Why not become the one

Who lives with a full moon in each eye

That is always saying

With that sweet moon


What every other eye in this world

Is dying to



I resonate so deeply with this poem. I am one of those who is walking around everywhere looking for Full Moon Eyes. Before I was a Christian it seemed the only ones who noticed were the cops! But thank God that changed. My journey into finding Full Moon Eyes began early in life when I was in college in Portland, Oregon. It was a very tumultuous time for me. I was navigating the labyrinth of dating, longing to experience new life and throw off my noose of self-addiction. This is when Herb Heofer became a professor at Concordia, where I was attending. Herb was very different then the others. There seemed to be an insatiable desire for adventure and excellence about him. He and his wife, Carol, were leading a trip to China. Atarah and I thought it would be a great way to get our feet wet in missions. It was on that trip we began to learn that Herb and Carol's greatest quality is their love.

After going to China, Herb and Carol began to invite us to their house for meals. They would listen deeply to us, laugh with us, grieve with us and offer little bits of advice at just the right moments. They bestowed love on us in a way we had never experienced before. After each meal with them, Atarah and I would say our goodbyes then sit in the car outside their house and have a conversation that went something like this:

"Wow...did that really just happen?"

"I think so."

"Did you enjoy that as much as I did?" "I did."

"Do you think it will happen again?"

We've had this conversation innumerable times over the years while in the Hoefer's driveway, always ending in "Do you think it will happen again?" At some point we realized that this question wasn't really about the Hoefers. It became for us a question about divine acceptance and the enfolding arms of God's Family. We were becoming insiders into a Kingdom we didn't even know existed.

When you look out the windows of our house, you see the bleak wall of a youth center. When we first moved here there was a little ivy on it. Last year we had to tear the ivy down, because it was tearing the gutter off the center, growing into their ceiling and popping up in the middle of the kids play area inside. None of us noticed the ivy until it was demanding a response. There came a day God's love through the Hoefers demanded a response of us. "Will you let my arms reach out through you also?"

Today my family lives in Mills. It's the section of Klamath Falls that people typically avoid, because of the run down houses, rough looking individuals walking to and fro, and the typically darker skin of folks in a very white town.

One of the first children we got to know in Mills is Mary. After spending less than a few hours with us she joyously exclaimed "I think I want to come here every day!" We couldn't help thinking "What have we gotten ourselves into?!" But Mary has grown to be one of the children so special and beautiful to us that she can come even on the days that are reserved just for our family. Last week for Valentines day we decided to celebrate the true spirit of St. Valentine and threw a feast inviting a few children. Mary was one of these and when it was over she jubilantly expressed "I wish we could freeze this moment!" Mary is searching for Full Moon Eyes and I'm deeply humbled that our searching has brought us together to be God's Family.

My son, Chris, is in first grade. When we first met Anna, one of Chris' classmates, she was very quiet and her hair was in her face veiling her search for Full Moon Eyes. I learned her name and soon she wanted a hug every morning before school. She began talking about wanting to come to our house like other children have. The chance came before school and she came over just for a moment. It was a cold snowy day so we ate cookies and drank hot chocolate. Later in the classroom she proclaimed, as heartily as one of those at God's banqueting table, "Chris, I came to your house today!!"

I've learned about the value of God's acceptance from my neighbors, the Markfords, also. In their house of three bed rooms, lived thirteen people. A friend was having problems with domestic violence so the Markfords opened their home to this family of four. Atarah and I couldn't help but ask "What does this mean for us who have far more room then they do?"

I'm seeing the signs of something I've never thought imaginable. God's Family is forming in our midst. Like our ivy its tearing and scraping at the walls of this place, popping up in our dining area, spreading into our neighbors' yards. How could we have missed it? Jesus is in our midst... and he has Full Moon Eyes.

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