Saturday, March 26, 2011


I just spilled my fresh cup of Vietnamese Coffee, so let's start there.  The aroma of fresh cà phê sữa đá rose from my table as I gazed out of the widow on normality.  I'm thinking that this evening will be different that yesterday, but that kind of assumption always get's me into trouble, or let's me down in the end.  One by one, people are filing in to the sushi restaurant next door, to indulge on raw manna from Heaven.  It doesn't sound good to me tonight.  I haven't had much of an appetite today.  In fact, I skipped lunch all together.  That decision will haunt me as the evening progresses, but somehow it makes no difference to me.  I'll fill the void with coffee and eventually a bowl of cereal.  Cap'n Crunch did the trick in college, now granola satisfies the pallet with less damage to the heart and less elevated levels of statistics that only doctors know will touch the conscious.

So, I sit here.  I sit and wonder why things have to be the way they are.  Why do I spit in the face of God?  Why is it that when we approach the pinnacle of life, thinking that each "i'" is dotted and each"t" is crossed, we find that we don't even know our own language?    Maybe it's because we never dive in.  We poke and prod at the safety of the bank of life's river and wonder if a dip is really what we need.  But we don't.  We dip our toes in, feel the cool touch of the water and allow the euphoric wave of freedom to engulf us for just a few seconds.  Then we retreat to the banks furthest reaches and dry ourselves off, disgusted that we allowed even a drop of the river to settle upon our virgin skin.

Then we do something that is probably the most repulsive act our infantile minds can muster.  We race across the street, with the few dollars we have saved for redemption, to the home and garden refuge, buying the first can of poison we can get our hands on.  We pay our debt, race back to the river banks, and dump it in without a though otherwise.  Our fear did not only enable us, but infected each and every person that had the balls to dive in the first place.  And then we smile, thinking we accomplished some brave feet of salvation.  But the problem is, the world is still polluted and we thank our God in Heaven that we are not like those poor souls that feed on the disgusting poison that runs through our veins to begin with.

Why?  Because we never realized that we spilled a couple of drops on our shoes, as we ran across the street.  At the rivers edge, after we infected those brave enough to jump in, we took our shoes off.  We touched it.  We thought that the grass under our feet might just comfort us enough to believe that we are like them.  Dying a slow death on a bank of safety, thinking that we are totally immune to the toxins that break us down, little by little.  But because of our self made rationalization, it only hardens our heart and makes it more difficult to allow the life giving sanctification to run through our body, instead of the poison.  

I'm an adulterous man, just like any other.  I admit it.  I would plunge a knife into Uriah's heart if I had the chance.  I'm a drunken fool that babbles endlessly on a soap box that no one sees.  I would steal the laptop that you are reading this on, if you turned your back.  I'm the one that holds the nail, as those nasty Roman's drive it in.  I stand by and watch the final spear pierce His side.  Not only that, but I laugh.  But thankfully, my grace is different from yours, and it pulls me closer to redemption than I might think it does.

My point in this psychotic rant is that none of us are immune from the darkness of this world.  We love others, and then demand payment for services rendered.  We serve, and then thrown the proverbial bowl of soup back in the face of those we serve.  We love God, but flip Him our middle finger and spit at Him when life does not turn out all peaches and creme.  We embrace God's salvation, but then walk around like lost little children, crying for mommy.  The problem is that mommy was in that river that we poisoned.  She wanted us to jump in, but we were too scared, and she spent all that money on swim lessons!

Your grace is not my grace, and thankfully, mine is not yours.  God dishes it out according to our appetites.  Some of us gorge ourselves, taking all that we can fit into our lying mouths, and some of us are bulimic, vomiting up any bit of grace that God sends our way.  But that's who we are, as fallen children of God.  The mess we make for ourselves, we often have to lie in. And at times, God sends the cleaning crew immediately.  But that's the problem, isn't it?  The focus remains on us, the messes of life and the poison that we infected the river with.  I don't want anything to do with that anymore, but I'll probably drink from it later.  But as my prophetess friend told me today, "just step out of you and enter into all that He is."  I'm not sure why that sounds so appealing today.     

Now, I think I'll get some sushi.

1 comment:

Edward Motter-Vlahakos said...

I think i've dumped a few bottles of that poison in as well...what are we so afraid of? Living in honest communion with our creator is a pretty simple matter, why do we constantly complicate it's effortless & elementary essence?