Here is The Spring and the River – Three. Lucy has asked Lucien to teach her how to restore someone.
Lucy sat next to the Spring with her feet submersed in the cold water. Lucien sat on the other side of the Spring in a similar pose. Waiting for her older brother to speak was agonizing, but Lucy knew that he would talk when he felt that the time and words that he had chosen were Right. He absently tapped one of the Spring’s white stones while he glanced at the sky.
Finally, he turned back to Lucy. “Restoring someone from the River to the Spring is a very delicate task,” he began. “When you try to restore someone you need three things: constant contact in the Spring, regular accountability with an older, wiser person who is thoroughly grounded in the Spring, and clear boundaries as to how far you will go to reach the person in the River.” Lucien paused and picked a small stone out of the Spring. “An emblem of the Spring – one of its white stones or one of the lilies growing around it – is a good thing to have one hand. It will help keep you tied to the Spring, help you ignore the River’s call. Keeping a flask of Springwater on hand will also help keep you grounded.” Lucien rubbed his hands. “Have you spoken to Mother and Father about this?” he asked.
Lucy nodded. “They said that if I’m being called to restore Marianne, than I can’t refuse. They said that it’s one of the most important tasks of the Springfolk. They mentioned boundaries and accountability, too.”
“The River of Wrong is treacherous, Lucy,” Lucien said, his voice low. “It will go to any length to draw in victims.”
Lucy’s pulse quickened, and she realized that she was frightened. But then she closed her eyes and felt the Spring flow over her hands and feet. She felt safe here by the Spring. “Lucy,” Lucien said, drawing her attention back to him. “No one who approaches the River with an attitude of arrogance will withstand it. None of us are above the River. The only thing that stands between us and death in the River is the Spring.”
Biting her lip, Lucy shuddered. She didn’t feel arrogant, but arrogance tended to hide itself in humility. After taking a drink from the Spring, she felt assured that she did not yet struggle with pride.
“I’m not the only who can give you advice about Restoration. Mother and Father are quite versed in it and so are many of our village’s elderly. I suggest seeking the counsel of a few others as well before you proceed. The more you talk to, the more you will be prepared.”
Lucy nodded, feeling humbled by the wealth of wisdom that surrounded her. “Now that you know what you need to have,” Lucien said, “I’ll tell you what I know about what you need to do. Restoration has to be done gently. It is a process that can take as long as months or short as days. You need to have contact with the person while they are in the River and out of it. You must be kindly persistent in your pursuit and completely vigilant against the River. Ensnaring Springfolk who are trying to restore someone is like a pastime for the River of Wrong. Your words must be gentle and convicting.”
“How do I know what gentle words will also be convicting?” Lucy interrupted.
“You’ll know. The Spring will lead you. Good grounding in the Spring of Right is not just for your protection but also so that it can give you the words. People often just look to the Spring to protect them from the River, and they forget how the Spring can use them to save others if they only let it do its full work in them.” Lucien stood up. “There isn’t much else I can tell you. My best advice is to talk with our parents in more depth. They have a lot of experience in Restoration.”
Lucy rose also. “Thank you, Lucien.”
Lucien smiled crossed the Spring to put his arm around her shoulders. “Don’t let the River trouble your heart. If you remain strong in the Spring, the River will target you, but it will not succeed against you. But it’s getting late, and we should get home.”
Brothers, if anyone is caught in transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. – Galations 6:1