Saturday, April 02, 2011

A New Name

Words have always been my friend, my companion when things got tough. I could write my thoughts and come into a clearer understanding of what was going on, how I felt and what I should do. But now, I seem to have nothing. No words.
Well, of course, there are words. The ones above are an example. I guess what I am saying is that over the past year or so, I don't like the words that come to me as I try to process. They feel empty, unimportant, with absolutely nothing solved. I remain in the same quandary in which I began.
I have spent a good part of the past ten years processing my thoughts and feeling by writing about the Episcopal Church, LGBT issues, bishops whose thoughts differ widely from my own. But many of those things have changed. If nothing else, I have changed.
I don't want to complain about the church anymore or who can or can’t be a part of it. I have no more idea what to do to make it better than anyone else. Besides, the best I can tell, it's better than a lot. Not perfect, but then it never will be. It's full of humans. A couple of thing I know…I am an Episcopalian and I believe that growth cannot be our primary concern.
I don't want to complain about LGBT issues anymore. Plus there are others who are far more up to date and able to debate the issues, both within the Episcopal Church, other denominations and in secular organizations. And I might add, they are doing a wonderful job.
And there are just so many other problems in the world. It is really difficult to focus on one. Just a small few of these...
budgets that feed the rich and further starve the poor…
a world out of balance environmentally, literally and figuratively...
violence which some feel can only be solved by more guns, more death, more prisons all the while screaming against abortion while showing large pictures of fetuses cut into pieces...
all the boys and girls who have been promised a job and an education if they will fight an unjust war in a foreign country so that we can play like we are safe here in the US. Oh, and oh yeah…the war…
Where does one begin? It is paralyzing.
And then there is God. What a joker! Or wrestler. Not sure which at this point. I vacillate between standing in confusion, scratching my head, feeling a bit silly for having come this far with so few directions up such a strange lane or feeling as though I have just been thrown to the ground and am now in a hammerlock. Either way, both feelings are debilitating to a degree.
To say I have been paralyzed is to tell only a part of the story. I have been rendered immobile with no ability to process.
So, imagine my delight when I found a new blog, new to me at least. It’s named Dirty Sexy Ministry. The name itself made me smile. One post resonated clearly, Disguised Blessings. It was particularly thought provoking.
The post made me re-remember that I know eventually I will come out of the other side of this thing and say "Aha!" as I nod slowly in appreciation for the understanding that what felt like an adversity was actually a blessing well disguised. Forget the fact that it was disguised in a bunch of what felt and looked like wadded up, wrinkled wrapping wet from whatever icky trash was tossed upon it before being pulled from the bottom of the waste basket. A blessing is a blessing. Thanks be to God.
I know I have been taking on a great many worries and concerns that do not belong to me -- right NOW, later maybe but now NOW -- I try to set these aside but they wash over me at unexpected moments in the middle of the night, in the midst of a prayer...even after offering a sermon, overwhelming me with joy and anxiety at the same moment.
So I suppose what this is not is the ravings of a mad woman (God knows I have wondered). Instead, I am merely involved in a struggle with what feels like the demons of the world rather than an angel of the Lord. I do believe there are demons of the world, however, I am fully aware that the process of understanding God's will for us almost always runs contrary to our culture's idea of ease and comfort therefore feels more like an affliction than a blessing.
I am not sure enough to tell the angel this but if it be demons, I say, Bring it on! Regardless of how well disguised it might be, I know who has my back.
If it’s an angel of the Lord, well, maybe it’s time for me to have a new name...regardless if it transforms me even more.