Word to the wise for this week. Y’all I been sitting on this for a full week now. What I want to write about happened last Sunday after church. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves!
Now, I am a late-twenties, single, crazy person. By that I mean that my hobbies, interests, and music/movie tastes are not the same as the typical late-twenties, single, normal person. I say all that to say this: I’ve been struggling with loneliness.
Some will scream, “JESUS IS ALL YOU SHOULD NEED!” Honestly, the people who say things like that always seem to be screaming. However, God made us for relationships and I’ve been missing that in my life when it comes to other late-twenties folks. Especially in the singles category (This is not my “where’s my man” speech. This is a “where-my-ladies-who-wanna-stay-up-late-watching-Veggie-Tales?” speech.). That all being said, I have started visiting a church in Winston-Salem. If you have ever accidentally been on the internet, you’ve probably seen someone post a link to a Steven Furtick sermon. He is the pastor of Elevation Church which is based out of Charlotte, but has a Winston-Salem campus.
So for the past few weeks, I’ve been going to church in Winston on Sundays because I’m lonely. Confusion might set in here: “You’re lonely. So you’re going to a mega-church where the pastor is televised on a giant screen. Sure. Seems logical. Weirdo.” But let me take a minute to tell you ’bout my God. Can’t He do it though? Oh YES HE CAN!!!
The first Sunday I walked up in the joint, never been there, being crushed by the weight of loneliness, heavy-hearted to say the least, what do you think happens to me? I see someone I know. She smiles and waves, then they open the doors and she goes in. I’m farther behind her in the line so I go in later. I happen to notice in front of me that the crowd of people is parting because someone is standing in the middle of the aisle. It’s her. She wanted to get her favorite seat, but then she came back for me.
Tell me my Jesus ain’t gonna show up in a huge crowd and make a lonely individual feel like an adopted daughter for a day. Tell me.
This brings us to last week. Last Sunday, 1/14/18, I drove to Winston and went to church. After church, I went grocery shopping. I went into Lidl, got everything I needed (or so I thought) and went to the car. A lady had parked beside me and hadn’t gotten out of her car yet. She was making a phone call through the vehicle’s bluetooth. She looked at me crooked as though she was offended that I was eavesdropping on her phone call when I came along side to put my groceries in the back seat. That’s when mom called to ask me to pick up some hot dogs and I remembered I hadn’t gotten dog biscuits. I went back in, came back out, decided to go around to the passenger side of my car and put stuff in so the woman wouldn’t be mad at me again. I put the stuff in the back seat and walked around the back of the car.
I was in a good mood. Church had been great, I was being a responsible adult and grocery shopping, and I don’t know…I guess all that frivolity had me walking with an extra pounce to my step. Whatever was going on, it all culminated in me moving just a little too fast.
Yep. That’s my face. And you’ll notice the spot on my eyebrow going up my forehead where I decided to forcefully implant the corner of my car door. I jammed the car door up my face, slapped my hand to my forehead, and collapsed into my driver’s seat shutting the door behind me. It took about 10 seconds for the world to stop spinning and all the voices in my head to stop screaming. About the time I got real good and calmed down, the first big drop of blood fell through my fingers onto my orange juice. The voices started screaming again. The only thing I had in my car was a beach towel.
Picture this — Winston, 2018. A girl sits in her Soul all alone, talking on her cell phone, clutching a beach towel to her forehead. Because that’s a thing that people do.
Now why tell you all this? Don’t these weird Sunday posts usually come back around to Jesus in one way or another? Can I tell you something? When I hit myself in the face with a door, I wasn’t spending a lot of time talking about the goodness of God. When I was bleeding into a beach towel and waiting for my mom to come drive me home in case I was concussed, I wasn’t really wondering at the grace and mercy of Jesus. When I pulled to the back of the Lidl parking lot and made myself a cup of coffee with a fuel canister camping stove…well actually, that was a lot of fun.
But you know what…God is good. Jesus has gifted us with grace and mercy and that is a wonderful wonder. Sometimes it is hard to remember in the moment that God is God, or even that He is good. What is important to remember is that before the bad…He was good. After the bad…He will prove Himself to still be good. So during the bad, even when I couldn’t see it…through the blood, He must’ve been good.
Usually there are three points to my “Word to the Wise” posts. But I forgot my last one. Because last Sunday, when I was leaving the grocery store…