There are times when I pray and pray. I follow the pull to do something and then things happen that are too inline to be a coincidence. This little series of mine has been another example of this. All I can do is shake my head at the timing of things.
I guess the best place to begin is with a poem I jotted down the other day to clear my mind:
I remember the you you once were.
That was the real you, the beautiful you.
The you who told me I was pretty when I didn’t feel so.
The you who was brilliant, funny, smart, and ambitious.
I don’t want to remember the you who slipped away.
The you trapped by the pains of this world.
The you that felt like a stranger the last we met.
The you that makes me hate this world.
The you that shows me my judgmental ways.
It was easier to walk away from someone like you.
They told me it was the smart choice.
Who needs that sort of trouble in their life?
I was “too good” to hang around that sort of trouble.
I wish I could have seen what I see now.
You didn’t ask for any of that.
No one does, no one would.
Still, I cannot push it all out of me.
The judgement is still there.
I would tell my kids to walk away too.
I know it is wrong.
We need to walk alongside those like you.
We need to fight the world together.
But, that would be too hard.
I wrote this about someone I was once very close to. I would run into her from time to time and we would hug, catch up, and exchange numbers. I would throw out an empty promise to keep in touch. In the back of my mind I would think of all the trouble she was. Trouble as in the real kind of trouble you try to steer your kids way from. Birds of a feather flock together and that would have been like trying to put hawk feathers with a cardinal. They just don’t flock together, you know?
I know Jesus chose to fly with all birds. That’s what made people turn their heads. It made many upset and furious and probably confused too. Jesus saw the larger picture, though. He saw the pain they never asked for. He saw the sin…but more…He saw beyond the sin. He saw the person, the real person, not the person this world has turned them into.
Can I ever be brave enough to do the same? Is there enough strength to keep standing each time I am knocked over? Am I able to hold my head high when I myself feel wrongly judged?
So, something happened to the person I wrote about that has me reevaluating. Something, the same something, happened to three people I was close to this last year that has me reevaluating what this world tells you is the smart thing to do.
Since this same thing happened to that many people in my life in such a short time, I feel I have a duty to dig deeper for the solution. Especially when it has caused so much grief that I haven’t been able to get past. I’ve seen the ripple effect it has caused since the others…and I now I know what is to come in the lives closest to this most recent one.
I don’t have the answers. I wish I had all the answers. The one thing I know is no one ever really chooses pain (sin) in life. We need to stop asking why people make the choices they make. Instead, we need to start asking why people feel they have no other choice than to do what they do. That’s where the answers lie. That is how we can see past their trouble and seek solutions. That is how we truly love our neighbors.
This has been a tough series because it very much slaps me in the face as well. It needs to be said, though. We all need to hear it. If we honestly evaluate the state of things that are coming to a head all at once, it tells us we need to step out of our safe little nests and fly against the wind of this world as Jesus did.