Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Thank you very kindly for our supper

Then all the disciples deserted him and made their escape. There happened to be a young man among Jesus’ followers who wore nothing but a linen shirt. They seized him, but he left the shirt in their hands and took to his heels stark naked. Mark 14:50-52

I get it. The being tired part. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

We are all tired. Andrea and Ali are tired of New York City winters. John is tired from working six twelve-hour shifts heaving discount tires around to pay for a trip to Italy. Cherish is tired of moving ten times in two months. Nicole is tired in the transition between suitcases, something she learned to overcome racing triathlons. Jenny and Tim are tired; the backyard project turned out to be bigger than expected. Even spring-break-Alan is tired; his neck hurts from leaning over while welding all of these cool thing-a-ma-bob key fobs.

And I could totally take off in the opposite direction, stark naked. Leaving it all behind. Especially that stack of Works Cited to grade and the supply list for the Mexicali crafts and games. I haven’t even read the self-study for the school accreditation.

So it was a good thing to wander around Psalm 139 this morning, slowly. Through he bits about If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall hold me, and the How precious also are Thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! bits. Because I am way like those disciples of Jesus. The could-not-keep-their-eyes-open-and-they-did-not-know-what-to-say-for-themselves disciples. Like them, I cannot even pretend for a moment that maybe I bought into the whole Puddleglum* mind game, Even if sometimes in early still-dark hours my tired soul slides into that existential swamp and is comforted. Like them, things are not exactly what I thought I had figured out, and it is always unexpected around the corner. But I have seen and I have tasted His faithfulness. And gathered up the leftovers in huge baskets. Which should tide me over on the journey.

Search  me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way. Psalm 139:23-24

* “One word, Ma'am," he said, coming back from the fire; limping, because of the pain. "One word. All you've been saying is quite right, I shouldn't wonder. I'm a chap who always liked to know the worst and then put the best face I can on it. So I won't deny any of what you said. But there's one more thing to be said, even so. Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things-trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones. Suppose this black pit of a kingdom of yours is the only world. Well, it strikes me as a pretty poor one. And that's a funny thing, when you come to think of it. We're just babies making up a game, if you're right. But four babies playing a game can make a play-world which licks your real world hollow. That's why I'm going to stand by the play world. I'm on Aslan's side even if there isn't any Aslan to lead it. I'm going to live as like a Narnian as I can even if there isn't any Narnia. So, thanking you kindly for our supper, if these two gentlemen and the young lady are ready, we're leaving your court at once and setting out in the dark to spend our lives looking for Overland. Not that our lives will be very long, I should think; but that's a small loss if the world's as dull a place as you say.”