It was one of his better days. The house was turned inside out in preparation for festivity. Someone was getting married. The air was crisp and friendly. And the Master had actually allowed more than a crack of smile to pass his lips.
It was definitely a good day. The girls felt it. The servants too. The Master's delight touched everyone. He had been down under for too long, ever since the revelations went on hiatus. And for today at least, the veil of despair thinned and the household bustled with relief.
She took courage in these promising signs. Might that crack of smile widen into laughter? Or last a while after? Why can't it reach and reverberate to his heart? Albeit its thinness and brevity, might it not hold him with hope until the rest of him follows afloat?
When the domestic rush lulled and they found each other alone, she approached him. The hush was so sudden that he could have heard her thoughts. He felt it too, that slight lift of air in his surrounding. The kind that settles deliberately to let a woman ask her man what she had already known but needed to hear again.
"What are you thinking?"
And he held her in his gaze a while, feeling the weight of a fine-hammered woe hang between them with calm despair.
"How lucky, how happy we have been, Madam."
She tilted her head slightly, listening into what he was not saying. He dropped his gaze, blushing at her attentiveness.
"I mean, look at us, and at all that we have. The past messengers - their messages carried an air of urgency. There was a desperate necessity in their work. Moses had to save the Israelites. Jesus was the epitome of miracles. David, Solomon, Lot, Jonah, Job...they all had an important message to pass on. What business do I have with messages? A poor, illiterate orphan, who just got unbelievably lucky by marrying you."
He paused to indulge in a husband's pride, drinking in her feminine reaction to his words. The intimacy did not last; it quickly soaked with guilt. And despair clouded his eyes again.
"Do I really have anything to say to the people, Madam? What, the few nursery verses would do the job, you think? It has been so long since the last time I felt that Presence, I might not even recognize its arrival again.” His voice rose a pitch, “Maybe there isn't anything left to say or do and we should all just be happy!”
The mistress did not answer. Her gaze broke and drifted towards the house. The servants sweeping out the dust. The morning light breaking forenoon. And she heard him sigh.
“Why can't we just not care?”
"Because you knew how it felt like," she said. "Because you knew exactly how it felt to be poor and orphaned and lost. You would not let it pass under your watch as long as you can help it. You would have adopted every orphan, given every traveler a hint of direction, and fed every mouth from your own plate. Because you know how it feels to be forsaken."
He shook his head and shifted uneasily on his feet. He was about to go under again. She chased his despair.
“And if that is all that you can do,” she said, “then do it. Do it every day. Maybe that is your message and what you’re supposed to convey. If God and the angels and every man on earth forsook you, then you don't forsake your own calling.”
And that was how the long pause in the revelations ceased. How the Forenoon was inspired. How the work revealed itself over and over again. By being grateful about what is good in life, and helping where one can.
Every forenoon, ‘till Kingdom come.