Monday, April 11, 2005

Picking up the Pieces

I go back and forth on my own free will. Some days I believe life is what I do with it; other days I believe life is what happens to me. But either way life seems to take me or I seem to take it, I try to remember we all are not yet whole; not quite fully human.

Virginia Woolf once wrote, "Arrange whatever pieces come your way." I wonder how many pieces come my way that I don't see. Or I wonder how many pieces come that I don't recognize as pieces, and how I see them only as obstacles that lie in my way. I know I'm the type of person to play it safe, and I know I tend to think of my movie friends and my real-life friends as sort of guideposts to better living (did I just say that?)...but really, as I listened in church today I was struck by the amazing amount of ways a person can screw up their life. I wonder if God really thought this through good and hard or if it was one of those spur of the moment decisions like going to Taco Bell to eat or running to Wal-Mart for deodorant. I know God is God and God is grace and love and so much more than I can even put into words, but you have to wonder.

I used to see God as angry judge, righteous fire-thrower, and eye-squinting-crazed dictator, but I don't think a God who gave us so many ways to screw up our lives could be THAT angry of a God. A God like that could not have the patience and mercy necessary for such repeated tolerance. Constantly hearing prayers of lament and sorrow and pleas for forgiveness and then, only to hear the very same thing again 2 hours later from the same people. Multiply that a couple billion times and there you have it: God everywhere, taking in every complaint and every step toward self-centeredness that we humans take and holding them all on the tip of his thumb, staring at them tiredly no doubt saying to himself, "yeah...I guess I can forgive them again--they're worth it in the long run."

And Love, yet again, keeps going.


CKerr said...

Do you know where Woolf said "Arrange whateve pieces come your way."?

Neville said...

I believe that was a paraphrase (but the idea is hers, which is why credited to hers) and name of the book is: "The Death of the Moth and Other Essays" by Virginia Woolf.

I hope that helps.