When we asunder part
It gives us inward pain
Apologies in advance for spoilers for anyone who may not yet have seen “Toy Story 3.” Stacy and I for the first time (I think!) watched the last several minutes of this movie, just a few days ago. In the process, we cried like babies. Maybe animated movies are not supposed to affect us like that, but the closing minutes of this movie hit us both dead center in our hearts. Andy, the “boy” from the movies, is leaving for college. Like most kids who make that transition, Andy packs what he needs to take to school, while he also packs other stuff, either for storage or for donation to someone who might be able to use it. In Andy’s case, his action figures are packed—Jesse, Rex, Ham, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, and, of course, Woody. On his way out of town, he stops to give them to a little neighbor girl whom he knows will love to have them—and whom he knows will cherish them.
What ends up happening is precious, and gets me closer to my point. Andy not only offers his toys to the little girl, but he also ends up playing with them, together with her, and for a while. At the same time, it is easy to see that he really, really struggles with letting them go (especially Woody!), though he knows that it is the best thing to do and the right thing to do. The little girl is thrilled, not only with the toys, but also with the attention and the playmate. In fact, I argue that she is far more thrilled with the playmate than with the toys. It was at this point in the movie, by the way, that Stacy and I were in full crying mode. Our cheeks were soaked.
This hit home with us because we are right there where Andy’s mom is in the movie: kids going off to college (and our last one very, very soon). This also hit home with us because we have wonderful boys who love others, especially the little and innocent ones, so we were reminded of their huge hearts.
And it hit home for us because we recognize how difficult it is when we are not able to physically be with those we love the most. These times are not easy for any of us. But the “inward pain” we feel is a wonderful reminder of how much we love one another, and of how much we look forward to the day—very soon, Lord!—when we will again celebrate (physically!) together in worship.
A Task for Each of Us
We miss being with one another, so for as long as we are apart during this crisis, let us all commit to use the directory to contact three (3) people every single day. This may happen via text, via email, via phone call, or via video call. Such contact will help keep us connected to one another, and it will make a difference greater than we could ever measure.