Earthcamp

The other day I took my blood pressure at my friendly local Wal Mart SuperDuperThanksForYourHusband’sEntirePaycheck Center. My numbers were fine, and the elderly man behind me commented “With a score like that you’re gonna live a good long time!” (note: It is not generally regarded as polite to read someone else’s blood pressure. I suppose it’s regarded as private information, like confession. Sort of a visible gauge of how dissolute your lifestyle is. “Wal Mart Blood Pressure Machine, forgive me. I ate 20 twinkies this week, in the dark of my bedroom closet so no one could hear the wrappers crinkling. And I washed them down with margaritas”* However, I didn’t personally mind him doing so since, well, he was an old fart and old farts are allowed certain liberties.)

 

 

 

Without spending one millisecond in thought, I replied brightly “Not too long, I hope!” and walked away.

 

I wondered after a moment or two whether I should go back and explain that I was not in any way implying that he had lived “too long”, or that I was trying to joke at the expense of those who struggle with high blood pressure, or that I was being snarky in any way. He was a kindly soul and was trying to compliment me, and I’m not sure what he thought of my response. Frankly, I was just revealing a bit of my heart.

 

I don’t want to live to be 100. I don’t want to live to be 90. I think 85 sounds okay, but still much too far away. Good grief! It’s over twice what I’ve already lived! I get so tired just thinking about it. I know the Bible says that a long life is a blessing, but how long is long? I’m just a kid at summer camp, begging Daddy to let her cut the visit short.

 

Dear Daddy,
Earthcamp is pretty, but it’s nothing compared to Home. I’ve made some friends, but I really miss You. There’s a lot of fighting here and it wears me out. When will You come to get me?
Love,
Jenni

 

I know, I know. There’s-a-reason-I’m-here-and-God-has-a-perfect-plan-and-if-I’m-still-here-I’m-still-needed-so-suck-it-up-and-do-your-best-run-the-race-with-endurance-do-not-grow-weary-of-doing-good-in-due-time-you-will-reap-the-days-are-long-but-the-years-are-short-etc-etc

 

Don’t get me wrong. I want to be here for my family. I want to make a difference. I want to make an impact. I want to go out in a brilliant blaze of glory. I’m not suicidal. I’m not throwing in the towel. I just want to say sometimes that Life. Is. Hard. And I thank God with all my heart and soul that it’s temporary. Oh God, thank You that this is not all there is! Thank You that eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things which?You have prepared for those that love You. Sometimes I just feel like I can’t wait one more day. I want to see the rooms You’ve created. The crystal sea. The chariots of fire. The cattle on a thousand hillsides. The lion and the lamb laying down together. The angelic host. The New Jerusalem! I want to be in the front row of the concert of praise that goes on forever because we never get tired or hungry or thirsty and our voices never crack embarassingly in the middle of our favorite verse because we are singing it extra loudly.

 

I want to sit in Your lap and listen to You tell the story of the world over and over again, from beginning to end, and marvel anew each time at how beautifully You planned it all out. You had it all under control. You didn’t miss a single detail. I want to throw my arms around the best big Brother anyone could ever have and let Him wipe every tear from my eye.

 

I didn’t go back and say all this to the kindly old fart who commented on my blood pressure. Maybe I should have. But I prefer to think he knew what I meant.

 

*I do not have personal information as to whether twinkies and margaritas mix together well. I would not mind finding out.

 

Who says?

Scientists say
that we are mostly space
our atoms spin
their proton paths
with perfect grace
but between the nucleus
and outer rim
just space within.

 

 

Scientists say
that this is also why
we cannot shrink
we’d be too dense
and we would die
so all my girlhood daydreams
starring shrinking
I’m rethinking.

 

Scientists say
that although we are space
we do not fall
through floors and doors
without a trace
because we spin so quickly
within our cells
where matter dwells.

 

Scientists say
and I believe just once
because it rings
so true to me
I have a hunch
that what we touch is shadow
we do not see
reality.

 

Our bodies here
Our homes, our lives, our earth
these are the dream
we float unformed
until new birth
we see the mirror darkly
depend on lies
believe our eyes.

 

But what is real
is made of more than this
the One who came
fills up all voids
supplies what’s missed
He made Himself a vapor
and then He died
rose glorified…

 

His body renewed
He showed up in locked rooms
Not as a ghost
drifting as mist
but passing through
the spinning space of matter
could not withstand
this solid Man.

 

And so I pray
for eyes strengthened to see
beyond my realm
that I may glimpse
eternity
and reality that waits
beyond this veil
beyond travail
beyond fear, and tears, and sorrow, and yesterday, today, tomorrow, and worry and death and pride and loss and all the dross this life pours out with every breath we take.
It’s fake.
So trade it in.
Let truth begin.

Blessed to be an April Fool

Seems I’ve imagined Him all of my life
As the wisest of all of mankind
But if God’s Holy wisdom is foolish to man
He must have seemed out of His mind

 

Even His family said He was mad
And the priest said “a demon’s to blame”
But, God in the form of this angry young man
Could not have seemed perfectly sane

 

We in our foolishness thought we were wise
He played the fool and He opened our eyes
We in our weakness believed we were strong
He became helpless to show we were wrong

 

So come lose your life for a carpenter’s son
For a madman who died for a dream
And You’ll have the faith His first followers had
And you’ll feel the weight of the beam

 

So surrender the hunger to say you must know
And the courage to say I believe
For the power of paradox opens your eyes
And blinds those who say they can see

 

And so we follow God’s own Fool
For only the foolish can tell
Believe the unbelievable…

 

and come be a fool as well.

 

~Michael Card

Hypocrisy

My favorite lecture (#2,381) is the one that goes something like this:

 

“No one can make you mad*. You decide to be mad*. It happens in your heart; no one can reach into your heart and make you feel anything, it is a choice that you make.”

 

*insert any other emotion (sad, grumpy, happy, etc) that fits the occasion.

However, I have to say…here are some things that make…yes…they MAKE…me happy:

 

melting snow

signs of spring

IKEA

this mug

this mug