Work In Process

July 24, 2010

It’s been a helluva week or two.   I cannot even begin to tell you how insanely busy I’ve been.   Up at 5:30, to bed at midnight or later and every day feels like one more day on the hamster wheel.

And it’s not slowing down for a few more weeks.

Especially now.

I’m compelled to keep moving.  To keep doing.  To keep thinking.  And. And. And…

G0d is requiring change in my heart.  I can feel it, I can see the need for it.   And I am taking baby steps to obey.   Even though all I really want to do is stick my head in the sand and pretend I can’t hear Him.

Still.  A baby step toward obedience  is the right step.  No matter how hard it is, right?

This last spring wasn’t pretty for me.  There were a lot of questions for G0d, a lot of shouting at blank walls and scrambling for answers that didn’t make themselves readily apparent.

Or ever show up.

Have you ever considered how completely insignificant you are?  A breath in, then… Nothing.  And you’re gone.   And there are those to whom you are necessary and those to whom you think you are important but, well, you really aren’t.

And how do you tell the difference?

No. I’m not wafting into maudlin.

This is the reality.   It’s important to recognize the people who matter and the ones who don’t.  The moments of clarity should define us and the moments of confusion shouldn’t but do anyway.

A man who showed love to me in a way that I had never experienced before died yesterday.

Back in the early days of faith he was so kind to me.  I was accepted by him.  I felt valuable when he spoke to me.  In those early days.   Before I knew that was the way he spoke to everyone.  Before I caught a glimpse of the gut-wrenching pain he struggled with every day.

No matter where he went, or how far he wandered from that upstairs office with the cheap furniture next to the lounge by the boys dorm he will always be, to me, someone who loved me.

In most Christian circles and on many blogs I frequent he would be a despicable man.   He left his family, abandoned his children, fell into deep, dark unspeakable sin.    He became a face of a movement that I was no longer able to despise from afar.  From the comfort of being surrounded by people who thought and looked and believed just like me.  And while I was saddened by his choices and confused by the emptiness he left…

When I saw him again.  And he smiled at me, hugged me and kissed my cheek.  I knew that he still possessed that love.  That brilliant, beautiful love.  Even though now I could see that it was refracted through such a broken and fractured lens.

Honestly, I relate better to that than I did the other.  When he defended me when no one would.  When he believed me when no one else did.

I wear a silver bracelet on my right wrist, it has that quote from Hamlet on it, “To thine own self be true.”

I often think of Rene when I wear it.

And I wonder how different it all could have been if, instead of the right to “personal” expression, there would have been a more clear and true understanding that his life was not his own.   We have all been bought with a price.  To be true to myself, as a child of God, I must always be true to His Word, His truth and His righteousness.

Rene passed into eternity yesterday morning.  I’ll find out where his choices led him when I get there.

I’ve missed him for years.

  • Doom

    This is a tough one to even discuss, for me. And, having said that, I realize that might put me out with you right there. Gay guys can like women, though most in my experience do not. Gay guys, the ones I have had an acquaintance with in the academic towns, cannot like straight men. And, to some degree, the reverse. If we can all sometimes… associate for professional or academic reasons. And that separation is for many reasons. I might even say that it is tough for devoted traditional Christians to accept, or for gay accepting versions of the religion to be accepting of our notions. Only secularism’s invasion of it has even allowed such a flooding of churches with acceptance.

    I do empathize your loss, if from my own way. People are people, if one does not feel threatened by them it is sometimes hard to not love kind ones. Even ones other’s discard. I have a friend now, though not gay, who is out of society for his bad habits (drinking and smoking and, well, a wilder youth regarding women), plus no sense he needs forgiveness maybe? Lots of people in my life simply don’t “cut it”, religiously (though I am working on them and me, including prayers). So, yes, I am trying to get over my own… sensitivities to see your loss, and making it. Because I will know some sense of your loss and have in the past as well, in other areas.

    It is a tough world. You seem to be doing pretty good. I hope you can see the perks with the pain, the roses with the thorns. Let God deal with the unknowns and unknowable. I just wish that were more possible, we are left to speculate so often! 🙂

  • Mrs Ipsa once asked me why one of my friends was a friend. She couldn’t fathom why I called him my friend and would do things with him. My only explanation was that he was my friend because he was my friend. Many years latter she came to the same conclusion about a women she works with. Sometimes we form close relationships with people, because we do.

    In my eyes loving your friends, despite their choices, and being loyal to your friendship, especially when it makes no sense to anyone else, is a virtue. At one time this man did and said somethings that provided you with a special connection and companionship. He became your friend. You would be a poor sort person not to feel his lose. Grieve him, morn his choices, pray he repented. NEVER APOLOGIZE for being his friend.

    If someone asks about the situation, defend your friend. You cannot change him. You cannot change his choices. You cannot make one bit of difference in his eternal destiny, but you can still be his friend. This does not negate biblical teaching on homosexuality. Don’t pretend that what he did was OK. Your friend did good work, at one time it sounds like he did kingdom work. Remind people of it. Tell them about things he did, give them specifics. Stick by your friends even in their death, especially when others would condemn them. Maybe he repented before it was to late. Remind folks of that point.

    There is honor in loyalty. Honor your friend.

  • Giraffe

    Sorry about your loss.

  • Serena

    I have some understanding because of the things I’ve gone through. I’ve had tons of questions and a lot aren’t answered yet, but I do know that G-d doesn’t always work like we think He does. In the apostolic scriptures, He calls Lot a righteous man. He said David was a man after His own heart. Look at all the people that make up the history of the scriptures – murderers, liars, adulterers, incesters. He called a liar His friend. He called a murderer to lead His people out of bondage. He called a religious mass murderer to write a good portion of the apostolic scriptures (NT). He says He uses the weak, foolish, despised, etc and that when we are weak, He is strong. I think we don’t understand Him or His ways very much. I do know that my ex who chose the same way was very concerned about if I had rejected Jesus because of our Hebraic traditions. He was relieved to find out I still trusted in His precious blood. It kind of floored me. I just know that the One who made us is not done with us and somehow He sees us differently than we see ourselves and others. We really don’t know what the outcome before Him will be. I’m trying more to not judge what it will be myself but to trust Him with people. I’m sad for the loss of your friend. I do not think Father was done with Him if he was His, even if He made really bad choices.

    Isn’t it amazing, though, how we will make that the epitomy of sin, when it is at the top of the downward spiral and gossip, disobedience, and a host of others we will excuse are at the bottom of the spiral?

    Love and shalom,