There is no structure to this post, I haven’t planned out what to write or say. It’s something I’m writing on the fly while deep in thought about the tragedies (and beauty) of life and recent events. To anyone who’s interested, I’m inviting you into my brain to see what type of stuff goes on in there sometimes, unfiltered and raw.
If you’re feeling down, angry, or scared due to recent events, then I urge you to read on from someone who has been through the same in the past. These are my thoughts in talking to myself.
It’s kind of ridiculous I’m writing this while listening to Ed Sheeran’s new song “Bibia Be Ye Ye.” It’s really catchy, yet very opposite to the somber thoughts in my head right now. But I guess I should mention it for whatever reason.
There was a chemical attack in Syria that killed between 70 and 100 people recently. A lot of them were children, and I’ve seen different videos of them convulsing and suffocating to death. It reminds me of pictures of heads without bodies on top of fences or spikes, people being burned alive in cages, acid being thrown on the faces of women, or brains being blown out of skulls by AK-47s on live videos on Facebook or third-party video sites. Whether innocent or guilty of some crime, most innocent, many people leave this earth in cruel ways. But who cares, we have Pepsi ads to be upset about, debates over the rights of yet-to-be-born vs already born and carrying life to have, and nice concerts, church services, or dinners to attend, right?
Yeah okay, but what are people or you supposed to do about it? Pick up a gun and go fight? Cry and ask God to make it stop? Blame politicians for every single thing that happens under their watch? Be cynical and post articles all day on social media to show how “woke” you are and how corrupt the world really is? You can’t blame people or yourself for not taking action, some are trying to do their best to contribute. Others just don’t care or can’t emotionally handle such negativity.
This is bull****. People are so fickle and weak. Children are being gassed; gay men are arrested and murdered; innocent people are bombed either by accident or as intentional “necessary” collateral damage in a fight against walking devils; women are beheaded in public for insulting religious customs; boys are indoctrinated (and trained in warfare) to hate Jews, Arabs, Westerners, or some other types of people for reasons involving a power struggle and piety; girls are sold, raped, and resold or killed by men who have comfortable homes while girls live in cellars or crowded warehouses. And that’s only the stuff on this side of the world, similar if not worse things happen in secret under the noses of those in the Western World.
This is not fair, it’s so wrong and makes me want to throw aside the ways of my beloved Teacher and King, the way of love, peace and forgiveness. Is there no justice in this world? Is there no righteousness? Do we really have to wait this long for final judgment? Let’s go back to the Old Testament ways: an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. A neck for a neck, a burnt body for a burnt body, a tortured soul for a tortured soul. Let rage and wrath be poured out onto those who do evil, and I’ll be happy to carry out the sentences myself as well. Just give me the means and a zealous people. I remember what anger feels like, I hid and festered it well for so many years growing up. Behind all those tears. I miss it’s power, or at least knowing the potential explosive power, and the fear it instills in people.
But wait, this way is flawed…it’s…wrong. The next train of thought of this way is so sinister and puts my own soul at risk: let rage and wrath be upon those who are indifferent as well. Those who would much rather watch videos of puppies, sports, HBO, Netflix, Telemundo, building a business, isolating themselves away from the problems of others, and doing everything that makes them “happy”, indulging in their hollow pleasures instead of dropping everything to love their fellow person more than themselves. Let those suffer the same wrath and rage as well for their indifference. Yes, they deserve an end to their “waste of space” lives. Wow, what a slaughter. No one would be saved, myself included in the lost. Even in my frustration, which is no longer anger but a deep pain in the heart like that of a little kid watching his brothers and sisters fight each other, I see that it can’t be this way, no matter how sweet vengeance is. If it was this way then we will all reach death by morning, and is that not the end of our known time here anyway? In this way, I would become just like my enemy: a lover of blood and darkness.
Agh, what blasted vanity! What loss! Such despair when you really come to terms with this thing that some call The Long Defeat. If loss is waiting at the end, what’s the point of it all? Not many are willing to confront this reality with reverence instead of ignorance or foolishness. It’s true what the wise of the past have said: this life is but a fleeting moment in eternity. A dandelion that grows only to be blown away in the wind someday. We are the hyphen between one date and another, written on stone. We are but a microbe living on a floating inhabitable collection of rock, water and air that sits in a painting of stars within a museum of universal art that has no end as we know it.
If one thinks far enough into this, the vanity and despair can drive you mad and into anxiety. I know because I’ve tasted it before; when I was only 13 years old I was already pondering these things. Yet I was good at hiding it, no one knew except the God I stopped talking to because I felt abandoned by everyone I knew and I thought everyone I had yet to know would do the same. No one can be trusted to be there for you, not even your own family. But I had to put on a smile and play the part of life, if not for the sake of my broken family and beloved baby brother at that time. So I was just the normal geeky Harry Potter looking kid with a comb-over haircut and a momma’s boy look. The weak kid. The nobody. The failure that was supposed to be aborted, or at least killed when he almost suffocated via pillow in his sleep.
If you’re still reading this, you may be thinking: “Wow, this is really dark.” Don’t worry, there is beauty in all of this, in all of my thoughts.
Because in all my ponderings–of life, death, anger, vengeance, vanity, despair, loneliness–I have found hope. I am no longer consumed by darkness like I used to be, but it also doesn’t leave me alone. It’s not an oppressive power, but on the contrary it now serves its purpose as a necessary history and context to what I now think, believe, and know to be true.
And that is this: That Love is the supremacy and core of everything we seek. It is the strength and refuge that surpasses the power of a thousand soldiers, ships, guns, and planes. It is the answer to all questions of meaning. It’s unshakable.
We all need it, from those like Ghandi to those like Hitler. It is drink to the thirsty, food to the hungry, clothes to the naked, substance to the poor, and freedom to the captives. Mercy is not getting what you do deserve, and Grace is getting what you don’t deserve. We all need both.
The best part of it all, is that we have already been freely offered such a love. Sure it gets trampled on, and sure it looks as if it’s not real given everything I mentioned earlier, but it is here. A small taste of it is in those puppy videos that people watch. It’s in the debates about unborn and born life. It’s in the hug between a mother and her children reunited after being separated by war, laws, or terror.
It’s everywhere, and it cannot be overcome. One candle will go out, but many more will light up. And it is in this mystery I found, ironically, the purpose of vanity: that life cannot be found until the end (or death) is reached. Not necessarily death as in ceasing to breathe, but death to self. It is a condition of the heart and spirit. A seed must first fall to the ground and whither before a tree sprouts and fruit hangs for all to enjoy. Suffering must be endured before rest is entered. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Is there a point to this article? Not necessarily. I started just writing random thoughts and it turned into this. I normally don’t share this much of myself with people I can’t connect with more than surface level, especially on such a public platform, but I felt this particular rambling might be a blessing to someone, even if it’s just one person.
A subtitle of this website is “An Ambassador’s Mindset.” Well, there you have it. An example of the darkness I once knew, and more importantly the Light that overcame it, in my mind is on display for you here. For those of you who think I’m crazy, I wouldn’t disagree with you. I promise though that I am not depressed, a psychopath or need help. On the contrary, I am full of joy, peace, and grace 🙂 Ask anyone around me and they’ll tell you. I am grateful with sincerity for having a clean conscience and nothing to hide anymore, because I am free from condemnation, pain, guilt, shame, and fear. I see darkness for what it is, a lie not worthy of fear, and I also see its righteous end at the hands of love. Now I am on a mission, I am compelled, to share this love that has set me free with others who need it. I am still learning how to do so in a powerful and very real way.
To me this love has a name, which is Jesus the Christ. I personally don’t believe you can have the same freedom through any other means or name, but go for it if you disagree. If you are suffering, know that you are not alone and that it’s always darkest before the dawn. There is hope, and there is comfort, today. Tomorrow? Who knows. Justice is on His way, riding on a horse from the throne of Grace and Authority, with a sword coming from His mouth to empower good and devour evil at the perfect appointed time. The fence between the two is not a place to be on that day, because the fence belongs to evil as well.
Love, peace, blessings and grace be with you.
The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: Fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil. – Ecclesiastes 12:13-14