Thursday, November 17, 2016

The Beatitudes Road

From the desk of the Tiger Lily.

There are times when the heart is too full for words, and this has been one of those for me. I am sorry to all of you for being silent for so long. The last couple of months have been extremely grueling in all the turmoil and upheaval from both this election and spiritual battles with satanic relatives. It has all taken its toll and I am exhausted.

Like many of you, I grew up with a completely different vision for my life. I expected to be, if not on top of the world, at least settled in a very comfortable, successful nook. The last thing I was looking for was a life of poverty, coupled with complete dependency on a Supreme Being for what good things may come. It was also the lowest form of life according to the legalistic Pharisees who raised me-- poverty was all very well and good for other people, but decent "christians" were always well-off, especially if they were related in any way to my family. When I chose to walk away from their pre-approved path for my life, they were condemnatory and condescending. "You're special-- you deserve so much better than that." "That's so far away! What's going to happen to you if LC dies? Will the family be a support system for you?" "What if nothing changes? Do you have a plan B?" (To answer that question, no, I don't have a plan B. I have God and I have LC, and that is more than most people get in an entire lifetime.)

The Beatitudes road has been extremely difficult to walk. I am grateful that His yoke is easy and His burden is light, because most days the journey has been almost more than I can stand. Poverty is a humiliating thing and a humbling experience, especially to someone who grew up on the coat-tails of "old money" and the name of grandparents that "meant something" in certain places, not that any of it was shared with my parents who had married without their approval, but just as something to aspire to. So, when the clingingly-dressed old cougar who is thumbing through the junior's section in the thrift store nudges me out of the way with her basket, or the L.L. Bean father who checks out ahead of us at the feed store takes his infant son and leaves the empty cart in the aisle, blocking us from getting to the cashier, my initial reaction is, "Who the hell died and made you god, you insufferable ass! Do you KNOW who I am??"

They don't. But it really doesn't matter where I came from anymore, as what matters is not who I am, but WHOSE I am. And it's the same for all of us. Our lasting identity is in Christ, not in how much money we make, nor how huge and well-decorated our mansion is, nor who made it to the annals of Who's Who, or even how many prizes and trophies we've been handed for "success" by the rich, powerful, and influential people in this world. What we do here only matters insofar as it glorifies God. Literally nothing we do here will last if it is not done in Love and thus done apart from God. Doesn't matter if it's a cure for mortality, or making a quadrillion dollars, or free energy. It won't mean anything if we do it apart from Jesus. This simple Truth gives our every action infinite meaning-- we're either living for ourselves, or Living the Love of Christ. It's a binary choice we make every second of our lives.

If you think about it, Jesus Gave up quite a lot for us. He basically went from Ruler of the Universe to baby in a barn. I guess I can swallow my pride when other people treat me badly because they think they can get away with it, since I'm just some schlub wearing wornout hand me downs from head to toe. (And little do they know, how they have treated the least of these is how they treated the Lord of all creation!) It's okay, really it is. He was treated badly too, just like so many of you out there, so I'm in pretty good company.