Whatever a writer is supposed to look like, I doubt it resembles the reflection staring back at me from the window of the fast food joint I’ve graced with my presence this evening. My coat looks like clods of dirt were thrown at it and my jeans are torn and patched. If I remove my toque, babies will cry.
I spent a number of hours today in a hole. Yup, you read that correctly; one of my bluer, blue collar tasks today involved jumping up to my shoulders into holes and prying out stubborn rocks. Hard labor. As a result, I’m less than fresh.
My cup of Coca-Cola has been empty for a while but I keep sipping at it, the taste gradually moving through the spectrum from syrup-sweet to melted, stale ice cube. Empty ketchup cups sit on my tray, keeping company with a French fry carton stained with grease spots.
All told, Superman probably frequents phone booths because he walked into a place like this, saw someone like me and decided to find somewhere more sanitary for a wardrobe change.
How is my mental state, you ask? Three days ago I was comparing myself to undergarments with worn-out elastic: all the basic material was there but some parts were all bunched up where they didn’t belong and other sections were drooping. Things just didn’t seem to fit. There are issues I’m facing that I just want fixed. Unemployment. Disappointing relationships. Dreams in a holding pattern (I’ve still got this crazy idea that I can change the world – a paradigm I thought would fizzle out along with my third decade.)
So why, asks I, do I have this crazy peace?
The Apostle Paul once wrote, “… The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus…”
All week long I’ve been letting my requests known, but it wasn’t until today that I made a feeble attempt at thanksgiving: A good friend of mine reminded me of something I didn’t really want to hear, so I texted him my response framed as a prayer:
“Blessed are you, O Lord, who has given me friends who aren’t afraid to kick my ass with the truth.”
Candor trumps profanity, amen?! If you’re reading this blog because you’re assuming that I’ve got my poop in a group, let’s both have a little giggle and move on to something useful. I’m sure of very little, friends, but of this I have no doubt: regardless of how you’re getting your butt kicked by life, hope is still found in Truth. Not circumstance.
What’s the truth? God, who was willing to enter time and space, be killed by men, buried, and then came back to life, is a God who won’t let you go once He’s got His arms around you.
“The eternal God is your refuge,
and underneath are the everlasting arms…”