I haven't had a chance to write lately, but today I guess I would say that I am in my feelings. During this double pandemic, I have had many thoughts but haven't had the words to say what was on my mind. I see that I just need a push when I write and one person in particular pushes me the most. Over the last four months there have been many things going on around me: protests, looting, layoffs, deaths, a COVID pandemic...you name it, it's happening.
Oxymorons come in many different shapes, sizes, etc. One day everything is great, but the minute I challenge anything, life is in ruins all over again. How can a peaceful house be a chaotic house? How can a marriage be lonely? How can a job be a passion? How can the one you love so dearly be the one you also not like? How can parents be friends? How can you leave but still stay?
How can happiness not be joy? Well these last four months have taught me a lot about myself. I have learned that I cannot take on the issues of others while still trying to figure out my own 'ish. Society has taught us to be who we are based on a standard and I have never claimed any of that. I am who I am. I have accepted who I am fully, flawed and all. But others around me have an oxymoron expectation about who I should be. And this makes it hard to say the least. When folks want you to be a certain way and you turn out to be who God has called you to be, this is when the "magic" starts to happen. How can a world be so cruel to us while at the same time beckoning each of us back out of the house to entertain it? Come. See. Be. Be all you can be BUT... it must be the way "I" want you to be. Well that is a conundrum in itself. Here I am out here preaching and teaching folks what I think God has called me to and then having to think about it in my own life. It sucks. It sucks to be misunderstood on every level of your life even when you are trying to be transparent and name your own foolishness. I have heard the following things:
"You can't control me or my time."
"I thought you were a Christian."
"They made you a Pastor."
"I thought you were trying to become a minister."
"You are selfish."
"I need some space."
"You are the problem. Life is good without you."
"Take your things and leave. I don't want you here any longer."
"You sent me off."
"I did not promise you anything."
"You change your mind all the time."
"Stop fucking talking to me."
"You never communicate."
"You never think of anyone else but yourself."
"You keep that same energy."
"You are just being petty now."
YOU, YOU, YOU. Now I know that many of us have blind spots but, often times there are blind spots for others. Feelings sometimes get bottled up and come out in many different ways. And honestly, those bottled up feelings create the oxymorons in my life. Those unheard and unsaid feelings hurt the most. The pain itself is indescribable meaning I have no words for them only what I feel in my body. Over the years, you become numb to a lot of it even when people jump in your face and yell at you. It's almost like righteous protest on a daily basis. Protests sometimes mean danger and other times produce fruit on the other side #DangerousFruit. Question is why do we deal with such danger in our lives? Why do we love what we don't like? Why do we suppress the immediate feelings to only end up with long term stress and problems in our bodies? Why do we continue on even when our minds don't have the strength? Why have we endured racism and the other "isms" in our lives for so long? These are questions that I have had to ask myself over the years of being in conversations where I was the bad guy. That is almost everyday of my life considering I work in Human Resources. It plays out 24 hours a day for me. I don't believe that I have ever been on the right side of any situation in anyone's eyes. It's a hard place to be in. It's a pit of never ending stories and thoughts. And I have come to realize that the oxymoron of feelings is that you can feel whatever and still improve. You can feel sick and still move. You can feel hate and still love. You can see scarcity and believe in the promise of abundance. You can fear yet still be courageous. You can feel nervous and be confident. All of that to say, I don't have to believe the things that people say to me because often times those VERY things are the things that make sense in your life. Those things that seem to be trouble for some, may be peace to you. I guess I have learned that two things that totally contradict each other can be beautiful and powerful. That same #DangerousFruit can be life to someone else even if it seems like it is death to you.
The tattoo on my foot of the comedy and tragedy faces is a daily reminder of this oxymoron life that I live.
I didn't understand, but after four months, now I do. It is amazing what a couple of months away can do for your mentality. So I'm moving, forward or backwards, I don't know yet but, I am not standing still any longer. I hope you do the same.
Life sometimes feels just like this burning snowman, but I wouldn't have it any other way.