I'm happy to introduce you all to the writing talents of my fifth guest in our Empathy Series. I met Laura through the Story 101 writing class and am privileged to be a part of that community with her. Feel free to give her some comment love and visit her blog linked at the bottom of this post.
Will You Find Me?
I know what to do.
To a certain extent, I always have.
There’s a security here, in knowing.
Even if my fear wins, as it most assuredly does, at least I am among those who know the truth.
My battle is not found in the striving to know, to be certain of what is correct and desirable.
My conflict lies not in God’s expectation of righteousness. I find peace in His character whether it is joyous or wrathful.
He is undoubtedly good, Sovereign, and wise beyond comprehension. I love that.
I, however, am tired. I am tired and angry and seemingly able to give a great dam when it comes to my fears and my needs. My patience ebbs and flows in great torrents.
I am bone-weary with the endless battle against my fears.
I want to leave.
I want to leave and I want to remain in the clash of color, feel the flow of air on my face.
I want to remain in the concrete.
It reminds, consoles, stirs within and I don’t want to turn away.
Keep me! Keep me here!
KEEP ME HERE!
The wind blows and all is okay.
I need a journey toward openness, limitlessness, a smack in the face escape from my finite abilities.
I want to breathe in infinity. To rest in the unpredictable Sovereignty. I stand on my highest toes in attempts to reach.
But this thing you have asked, this I cannot do. I cannot day-in and day-out face my weaknesses, my fears, and my shortcomings in light of a miniscule impact as compared to your infinite grace.
It’s not about them: their needs, afflictions, travesties, whatever. It’s about me. Did you ask me to go because you knew I couldn’t? How did you know where to find me? Did you know I would again find myself laying bare my soul to this fear?
I want to leave.
I need to be swallowed by that open limitlessness.
As long as I drive toward, I cannot forget.
Will you find me again?
The character I chose to empathize with/imagine possibilities with is Jonah. I didn’t take from any specific passage within the book, but rather did some hypothesizing as to why Jonah struggled so much. We don’t know a whole lot about Jonah and his motivations, but I offer one possible explanation, one glimpse into the desperation often found in avoiding fear.
LJ works at a Community Mental Health Center in the Midwest, serving children and their families. She has recently begun a Master’s of Counseling program that is sure to stretch her in ways she never imagined. Things she loves include camping, ice cream, Henri Nouwen, feather pillows, and writing about the struggle. Also, sarcasm. She blogs about things ranging from grace, to socialism, to monsters, and back over at http://letsbehonestlj.blogspot.com/.