I'll let you in on a bit of a secret: I'm not really that okay. I am a master at playing healthy and fine when things go a little awry, but my happy facade has been under more than the usual load of stress over the last few days, and the seams of this mask have started to fray, tipping off the critically attuned. Don't set off all of the alarms at this point - I need neither pity nor chide - this is just a little bite to let you know that not all is always well in the mind and spirit of your friendly neighbourhood Spiderman.
My eager little heart and I have been having a fight with God this week. The cause of our quarrel? Love, how ironic. In my childlike (and sometimes childish) way, I have come to my Dad Proper with a simple request: let me love somebody. In His abundant patience He has let me shout, cry, scream, fume, pout, scoff and worry myself into an emotional exhaustion, quietly waiting for me to shut up. And tonight He answered with a song.
I have had a few moments in my life when (though not in an audible voice, exactly) I have had a conversation with God. "Heart on Hand" is the record of one such encounter - this will be another.
I was working the PowerPoint tonight for Refresh, the training week worship service at Mini-Yo-We. I'm really not very good at this role by nature, but it is one that needed filling and after a few days of fighting with God I knew the proverbial platform was not the appropriate arena for this little soul. Sitting on the floor beside the stage suited my mood and my spiritual posture just fine, but it was a struggle even from such a vantage point to keep up with the band. I kept moving ahead too quickly, minimizing a window in the middle if a bridge, and at least twice I pulled up the songs out of order. The second time this happened, I swore. Quietly. I could almost see God raising His eyebrows in the pseudo silence of facial expression... "Do you see yourself? Can you hear you from there? Stop and look. Listen."
"I know," I said in wordless reply, "I'm a mess."
So when I finally got to the right slide about one second later, I had to laugh. "Take, Take, Take it all," said the song. "I'm gross," I said to God with a dry laugh. "I'm like over-done grilled cheese and hot soup on a boiling day. I'm gross."
"I know," I heard. "You have been acting gross. But you know what? I am still hungry for you. I still want all of you, gross or not."
So I laughed. My anger melted away with my fear as I realized again the goodness and majesty of grace. Did He answer my question? No. It was a gentler reprimand than was given to Job, but in a similar vein of impression: I AM your Father, you are my child; I AM the sequoia, you are toothpick. He's big, I'm little. Just a reminder.
So, while life isn't blooming like a rudbeckia bouquet, I am back in alignment with Christ. I'm still a mess, I could still use a hug and my heart will take a while to settle and reset, but this is the right direction: more like Jesus, and less gross.