Saturday, November 19, 2011

Genesis 4:7

Mostly Fiction... just so you don't freak out.

So I came around the corner and found a girl in the alley being pecked at and eaten alive by a large black bird. As I ran closer to shoe the bird away, I noticed that it didn't have all of it's feathers. It's head was bare and ugly, the black eyes bulged out of it's head and it's claws were deep in the girls side. Even though the girl was writhing in pain, she wasn't trying to fight off the bird. I shoed it away and it only flew to a nearby fire escape and looked at me.

The girl was badly hurt, and as I knelt over her to assess the damage, she looked at me with big green eyes. Blood dripped over her face and her right eye was stained with it. Her breathing was shallow, puncture wounds were all over her body, but the freshest deepest were in her right side where the claws dug in. Her clothes were stained with dried blood as well as fresh. She looked at me as if to say thank you for a moment's peace, but as I tried to help her, she kept pushing my hands away.

I tore off my sleeves and tried to put pressure on the wounds in her side. I called and cried out for help but it seemed like no one could hear me. I laid my jacket on top of her and propped her feet on a nearby cinder block. All the while, she is pushing my hands away, pushing the blanket aside, kicking away the brick.

In a hushed painful tone, I heard her speak. "Thank you for helping, but I'll be okay. Just leave me here and I'll be fine."

I object passionately. "The bird isn't gone. It's just waiting for me to leave. I need to get you somewhere safe. I need to help you."

"No. It's okay. Just leave me here. You've done enough by giving me this moments rest." Her mouth kept moving, but her voice is inaudible."

I look at the bird, and it just stares at me. I yell at it and try to scare it away, but it doesn't move. Even when I try to throw little bits of concrete at it, it just moves to one side or the other as I miss. I can't leave the girl here. I reach for my phone, but it's not there. I must have left it in the charger this morning. I call out for help again, but no one is around. The girl is still just trying to remove my jacket from her, but she is getting weaker.

So I pick her up, wrapped in my jacket. As tenderly as I can, I take her out into the street. It's empty. I call out again and again to the nearby buildings, asking for help. The hospital is a few blocks down the street, so I head in that direction.

She's protesting, but weak. I hold her close and feel the warm liquid on my chest. I hear a flap of wings and that large black bird is following us.

"Just leave me here." Her voice is weak, but once again audible. "I don't care what happens to me." I'm getting tired. The bird is following and cawing at us. "It's okay. Just put me down. I want it to happen."

I can't. I just can't do it. I have to save her. She loses consciousness. The hospital is just up ahead. I come in through the sliding doors crying for help. A gurney is wheeled over and I set her down. After talking with the receptionist and filling out paperwork, the doctor comes out.

"She's lost a lot of blood and I don't know if she'll make it through the night."

I offer mine, but it's not the right type. I'm told to go home and rest. There's nothing more I can do for her tonight.

So I walk out the door; my face stained in tears, my clothes stained in blood. There is the bird, perched on a lampost right outside the door. It stares at me with it's big scary eyes on it's featherless head.

I haven't won this thing yet.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Pastor's Quentin's Gardening Parables #1

So last week, I went gardening with Pastor Quentin. With my new van, I'm looking for a few extra dollars to help me at the gas pumps. Pastor Quentin hired me to help him with some yard work. The first day, he had me digging holes and planing ground cover. He showed me everything, but God taught me what it meant.

When your digging holes to plant a ministry, you don't want to plant it too close to another. They all need their space and do not need to be competing for space or resources.

The ministries are pretty snug in the pots they are in, but need to come out so they can be planted properly. The pots were just temporary. This requires the planter to shake it out, and if that doesn't work, squeeze the pot a little on one side and rotate and squeeze on the other. Then shake again. Ministries don't always look like they started out and although you might seem to have things organized on the start up, things tend to get shaken around a bit at first.

Once the ministry is out of the pot, the planter must take something sharp (knife, old shears) and score the roots. This means cutting up the roost system. If this doesn't happen, the roots just grow in a tight circle around the plant and don't extend into the soil you put it in. Concentrated roots means it's easy to pull out. Your ministry cannot flourished if closed off in a tight niche. New people have to be welcomed and that might mean cutting the closeness of the group for a time. But it will be better in the longrun.

The ministry must be placed where it's leaves are above ground, and special soil from the bag is mixed with soil from the ground. Ministries take money to start, and someone will have to pour money into the ministry to get it going. It may be that someday in the future, the ministry will survive off the money in the field where it is planted, but it needs help getting there. Also, the ministry can't be undercover. It needs to be seen. An underground ministry has no accountability. It breeds secrets and division and would have to work extra hard to get where it needs to be if it makes it at all.

Once the soil is in place, the planter must push the soil in around it to remove all the air pockets. The ministry leaders must let go of anything in the ministry that is just taking up space. It needs to be efficient in the way it handles money, property, and time. Otherwise, the roots can rot.

Last, the ground is watered. The Bible speaks of being washed in the Word of God. It also refers to the Holy Spirit as living water. The ministry needs both the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to flourish. If there are any air pockets that did not get removed, they will be revealed by the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. If they are not immediately corrected, the whole plant is in danger.

I wonder what I'm going to learn next.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Nervous

The night before the audition, I couldn't breathe. I thought I was going to throw up. I knelt there with my face over the toilet gripping the seat with my hands. The faint blue water shivers as I push air in and out of my mouth trying to get the precious oxygen down my throat. The sides of my vision have darkened and I can only see what is directly in front of me. My heart is beating in my ears and I can't feel my legs any longer.

...

The stage is dark. I'm early. The director isn't hear yet. The janitor let me in. I walk across the stage on my toes. I jump a couple of times just to hear the sound. It thumps. The echo dies out almost instantly. I reach down and feel the stage with my hands. If it were a blanket, I would grab it and draw it snug around me. I would roll in it until it was my entire world. I would...

I feel a tingle on the back of my neck. I'm being watched. I push myself off the floor and peer into the darkness. In the doorway, there is a silhouette. Whoever it is can see me, but with the lights off, I have no guess as to who it might be. It enters the room and walks towards the stage.

"What are you doing?"

"Nothing... I... I..."

The lights jump on. The man was standing by the big breaker just off stage. He is wearing blue jeans, a dress shirt, and a leather jacket.

"What are you doing?"

I rise to my feet with my head down. Sorry. As I walk past him, I hear him mumble something, but I can't make out what it is.

...

I'm backstage, about to go on. The spotlight shines down and makes a circle on the stage. My throat is caught again and I finger my chest looking for my diaphragm. I push it a couple times as if giving myself CPR. My name is called. I step into the light.

...

I'm at home again, kneeling in front of the toilet. My hands are on the seat and my breath stirs the water. The phone is on the floor next to me. I'm waiting for a phone call. My breaths are shallow, but I can feel the soft tickle of the bath mat on my legs.

Monday, November 14, 2011