Here she is, splashing about drinking rain water and ignoring mummy and being so naughty and so completely excellent. And yes, that is a rusty bucket. And yes, she got sick. Well done mummy.
Commence bloggity blog:
Music is just the best thing. Sometimes I listen to these earphones and wish that these fingers of mine could create the experience that we get from those songs that grab your soul and soar somewhere more beautiful, more right, more home and more adventurous. I wrote once in my God book (journal, diary, prayers, private blog with more terrible poetry than I permit myself to publish on the internet) the following:
'God, make me like the exciting chords'.
You know what I mean? Those notes that make your chest thump, the bits of the good songs where your hands fly around and you change a little bit inside.
I've never been into the kind of music that's ever so clever but ever so dull - if you can't turn it up loud and have a good time you may as well turn it off. And go sit in a beige room drinking lukewarm milky tea and wearing boot cut jeans. In 2013.
Music is a taste of God - it's to be inside who he is, to experience something spiritual that everyone can feel. Living with Him is meant to be outrageously, astoundingly exciting. He invented the exciting chords. He is when the beat drops and the room roars and the world shakes.
If I know one thing well, it's Christianity.
I've done church a lot, 29 years worth.
Some of it wasn't very exciting.
One of the things that hurts the most when you're following Jesus is how the media portrays you. It feels personal, and you have to breathe and remember that it's not. You follow Jesus so by default you're part of a religious group and the people that hate tend to shout loudest and they get heard and they get caricatured and then, alarmingly, you're a Christian so you're judgmental ignorant, two dimensional, cultish, uneducated, emotionally unstable, bigoted, prudish, perverted, simple, outdated...many things.
All of that stuff I can take because it's a load of crap - we're all of us on this globe messed up and some of us are Christians. Jesus loves us all and he's not messed up, he's doing pretty well actually and he can carry us home.
The thing I can't take is the perception of Christians as boring.
Maybe because it's a little bit true?
I used to be bored, I got funneled through GCSEs and Alevels and I did some weed and a lot of drinking and some praying and some Bible studies and I kissed some boys and was bored bored bored but I didn't know it because I wasn't awake yet.
And then this little thing happened called faith hitting me in the face, I suppose that God touched my hand and I came alive. My heart has been overwhelmed with joy and with pain so many times - my joy in His presence, and sometimes His pain when I pray for the world that He loves. There is no going back, there is no retract, there is no other option than to keep living this even when I feel nothing for months when I turn around and see Him there then...off we go again. Feelings and choices and determination but all of it ignited by Himself meeting myself. Those eyes.
And it's not just the experiences or the feelings or the heart stuff. My brain knows his character because of the Bible and because I pay attention during sermons and because I've studied this stuff and because of the stunning things around me but so often I have found myself bewildered by the boringness of our lifestyle as Christians. HE IS WHEN THE BEAT DROPS, people. He is the one who now laughs in the face of death, who turns over the tables and stomps about shouting at us and scooping children up out of the dirt. He is the one who offends all the proper people who deserve heaven because they're oh so righteous. If he was here in your town right now i'm pretty sure that if you wanted to follow him you'd find yourself walking into places that no 'good Christian' would go near. Where's the last place you would go to find someone and rescue them? Who do you judge? Who offends you?
Religion is a death dirge and it sounds ugly. Too often we sound ugly and we don't look much better.
He invented dancing. That's one of my favorite things about God - that no matter how we leap or fling or thump about...he did it first and he's doing it bigger. We've got glow sticks but he's got galaxies.
And the thing i'm trying to explain is stuck inside my chest and it's late and I've got to sleep but I think my point is that we're too religious and we don't want to dance with God.
I think we should try it.
I know that my life isn't boring, I am often drowning in the difficulties of what i'm trying to do/ survive but i'm not bored. I haven't been bored in years. We were worshiping (sacrificing goats and pigeons, that kind of thing) at home the other day and it hit me that this Transition Home could destroy everything I love. My marriage, my family, my relationship with God, my sense of home. I am so vulnerable from here on out and I am utterly terrified.
When B was born I struggled so much with how much she needed me, with feeling like I couldn't love her like she needed me to, I hated being depended on that much and I resented losing my personal freedom. It took a while for my heart to stretch to fit her in all snug and safe and now i'm asking, actually asking for that process to happen again. But harder this time, for so many reasons, it is going to be so much harder.
Because today I got on my knees and asked God to make my heart bigger so that it can fit more girls inside it to love them like I love Beth. Which is a lot.
This doesn't feel like a boring song. It feels pretty epic.
So to conclude: I think that God is epic and that we should all learn to cha cha cha.
Good night. xxxxx