This week marks the seven year anniversary of the loss of our pastor and dear friend Kyle Lake. Kyle’s legacy lives on in many ways. One thing that has been especially meaningful for UBC’ers, those who knew him and those who have joined us along the way since his passing, has been Kyle’s benediction that we say as a congregation at the end of the service. I have asked several people to reflect on the benediction and share thoughts with us. I will be posting their stories and artwork here for the next few days.
Within my arms, these flesh and bones,
the beat of life that is my own,
the blood that pulses in my veins
and in my chest reverberates.
The steady press; again, again,
on and on, beneath my skin.
Seven hundred fifty eight—
the miles that kept me far away in space
and in a different place and time.
I have a different name. I tried
to reconcile the meaning of
the calls that came to me that day.
They seemed to say
the end had come.
And now the months, the years have passed.
The distance stays; the empty lasts.
The missing you, the missing me,
and everything I used to see,
and all the ways things used to be,
and all the possibilities
and yet have slipped into the grave.
I close my eyes to look inside
and take account of what has died
and what is left. God knows I’ve tried
to do my best to extricate
the remnants of a lifetime’s faith,
the threads that somehow still have stayed
unchanged and say to come awake
Love, embrace, and live, you said.
We took these words to be as bread
and wine. A fine reminder of
that time and of the way to build a life.
And like the echo of a song’s refrain,
like lyrics on repeat they play.
Implanted in our souls, they stay.
This benediction—it remains
a life-sustaining, heart-remaking,
gospel that from here
we carry on.
Lynnette Davidson attended and was a vital part of the community of UBC during her time at Baylor and Truett Seminary. She and her husband Sam currently live in Nashville, Tennessee with their beautiful daughter Lindley. Lynnette is a therapist at Vanderbilt Psychological and Counseling Center.