Archive for January, 2022

God loves the imperfect

As one who makes mistakes,
but tries desperately not to,
I confess, I love hearing that
God loves the imperfect.

As one who must regularly confess
the miscue, the misdeed, the missed mark,
I delight in the notion that
God loves the imperfect.

As one who, just yesterday,
said a quick yes, when I should have said a considered no.
I am grateful that
God loves the imperfect.

As one who just typed imprefect
rather than imperfect,
I am glad that God has a sense of humor 
and still loves the imperfect.

As one who pays too much attention 
to what others think, in hopes they'll approve, 
I sigh deeply to think that
God loves the imperfect.

As one whose tendency is 
to find fault with oneself and too often 
with the other, I am humbled to know that
God loves the imperfect.

As one who regularly revisits what I should have said, 
while others are speaking and I should be listening, 
I am bolstered to know that
God loves the imperfect.

As one who is easily distracted and often
a million miles away from where my feet are,
I feel the universe gather me back to the
God who loves the imperfect.
As one who regularly tries too hard
to earn her own approval,
I inch my way into the pool of grace and hear again that
God loves the imperfect.

The past is the past, God says,
as God's love of the imperfect 
firms the footing of those whom
God is perfecting.

On the sixth say, God created humankind,
you and me and all of thee,
and God said we were very good.
We were not yet perfect.

God loves.
God loved then.
And still, God loves the imperfect.
Thank God.


Under the overpass of life


I am paused for a sip of refreshment from the Swell water bottle I’ve pulled from its cage which is mounted on my bicycle. I have chosen this spot for a water stop because it is nicely shaded under the highway overpass. Here I can shelter from this Florida sun I’m not used to — it is January, after all. Overhead, gigantic cement girders support a six lane highway. I can hear the traffic whizzing by… at considerably more-than-highway speed.

No, I do not lament the pace of life that is passing me by, ever at breakneck speed. Rather, I am perfectly satisfied to pause and sip in this shade as the other cyclists pedal by. I acknowledge some with a nod. Others pass without even a glance. A few alert me that they’re coming. “On your left,” they say. And they are for a fleeting moment and then grow smaller and smaller in the distance.

Suddenly alone with my thoughts, I let my eyes travel upward to the giant grey girders over my head, silent and strong but massive. For a very split second, I imagine what might happen if they came crashing down. But I dismiss this thought quickly. I am confident that a capable architect, an accurate building engineer and a diligent construction crew erected this structure. Certainly, all necessary precautions have been taken and the required inspections have been made to guarantee its structural soundness and assure safety.

Standing here alone astraddle my bicycle saddle, a cycling helmet the only form of protection I have, I suddenly realize I’ve put a lot of trust in a whole host of humans I’ve never met.

In this moment, something inclines me to look upward and past the girders.

When I do, the dazzling, impossibly-azure sky peeks from beyond the bridge’s span and compels my gaze. “Why,” it seems to say, “if you trust these chunks of cement to protect you, why do you not trust me?” The voice-that’s-not-a-voice goes on. “I am the architect of all that is, the designer of all that will be, the builder of all that is becoming. Why, if you trust the work of human hands, do you not trust me?”

The Lord of Universe now has my full attention.

Why don’t I trust the Lord of the sky to protect me as I go along my way?

When I look around at all that has been made, why don’t I trust?

When I survey all that has been given, why don’t I trust?

When I recall the many instances from which I have been rescued, why don’t I trust?

In that moment I turn my eyes again to the ghostly white of the cement girders, ominous in their row-by-row alignment overhead. I notice the rumble of traffic which now echoes in thunderous tones on all sides. I permit the thought which had been holding itself back: if I heard the structure of this bridge crack and start to give way, would I be able to extricate myself in time? Could I dive to safety? What about the other cyclists? What of the unsuspecting motorists?

No, I decide, I could not save myself. No, we could not save ourselves.

Slowly, I take a final swig from my Swell, carefully screw on its top and slide it back into its plastic cage. Looking to left and to right, I ease my bicycle back onto the trail and propel myself into an easy rhythm.

Pedaling on

I probably won’t stop here on my return trip. I’ll pause in the shade of a nearby tree, greened by the sunny days and watered by the summer rains. And I’ll listen.

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