Sunday, February 12, 2017

Day 19 Authenticity

Day 19


February 12, 2017

Water flowing over rocks, rounding corners, fluttering past branches, racing through narrow ways, this is the conversation last night. It is constant back and forth between tight places spilling into deep cisterns diverging again into fragmented talking, bubbling always into deep laughter. The round wooden table around which we share, in a dimly lit room, is fitting for the life goals, life sorrows, and life tragedies spoken to one another while listeners hush. We are honored with the contents of their heart. Through the lens of us redeemed, we know these chards and fragments tower into a mountain of hope. For, we believe. We hope. We love.

A husband joins us as he is the last of the men, the others leaving to rest their weary heads. For it is late, very late. Some of us leave yet wander back pulled by the unknown tug of the expectant. We are not disappointed. The night is rich with moments shared that for many of us will be a memory seared into our hearts and senses, satisfying all five. To live is to hurt. To love is to share. To listen is to honor. To hope is to live.

Our brother leads us to a solemn moment, he senses his friend's presence. Our time in this home is full, rich, but Rich is not here. But our friend hears him laughing, sees him crying and senses he is proud of his widowed wife. At moments like this we allow Jesus to minister beyond theology. It is well with our souls and we empty full cisterns grabbing tissues.

The night goes long as we have another heart to hear. We want to listen. And again we grieve the pain, the sorrow. But as we end our time in the wee hours of the morning we affirm our assignment on the planet. We are His hands and we are His feet. And we are called to love and to love well. 

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Day 17 Enough - Of Me

Day 17

Enough - OF ME!

February 1, 2017

Today I confronted. Dog gone it. Enough is enough. We do not have time for this silliness. So I hopped in the car, pedal to the medal, and made my way to where I needed to go. I do not mind confrontation. What I hate is the mamsypamsey place. The place where we are bothered and say nothing and just complain. I am too direct to remain in those spots. And today I was done! Done!

I pulled in the parking lot. They were not there.....until, uh...they pulled in next to me...and...well....that is when the bravado turned to shakes. Oh, boy! The percussion section was intact.

They got out of the car and did not turn back. I got out of my car and did not turn back. I committed amidst the repetitive pulse. They opened the door to where they were going. And that is when I asked, "May I speak with you?"

It did not start so well for my agitation was speaking and they were about to end the conversation before it really started. I stood my ground with eyes doing the talking, loud talking. "C'mon, you're not serious - you're not going to have this conversation with me??" I screamed, in my mind. At heart I am faint of.

Really? I am not moving. And I didn't. They went inside but only to quick peek their head back outside. Yep, I was still there. So they came back out and I continued to talk. For I had to have this conversation.

But then I began to listen and I asked more questions and I was soon able to get beyond "the point." Not only was I listening I began to hear their heart, which lead me past their words, directly to their wounds.

My thought words, ready to exit and come between us, began to slurp and slosh. They formed into, "Will you forgive me?" For I began to realize this person felt that they were damned if they did and damned if they didn't. They felt trapped. They felt misunderstood. They felt unwanted. They felt like an outsider. An apology was their felt need. And I could do that - apologize. So I did.

I apologized for our part, the part which continued to foster their outsider feelings. Sure, I could win some logical points, if that was my point. But all of a sudden God, in His mercy, threw me past my puny points. I am on this planet to offer some love, dog gone it. Some understanding. And mostly apologies. A lot of apologies.

Jesus has judged and Jesus has saved. And that's a game changer for me. He paved an adventurous love hike. Yesterday He gently moved my face towards His. He showed me the freedom He gave to love and to love well.

I reached out my hand to engage in the ancient ritual of friendship and deals. They were hesitant of course but I insisted. My hand stretched firm. They relented and we shook hands.

Another close call, but I am glad God caught my attention. For it's enough. Enough of me and my ways. Yesterday was a very good day on a very sad and heart sick planet!