Friday, July 22, 2005

I love the late nights, all alone, a quiet humming in the house, my books everywhere, the t.v. turned off. Soon, however, I'll need to get some sleep before parental duties begin tomorrow.

I was up early, going to coffee with a friend who completely forgot about our appointment. I sat uncomfortably at the restaurant waiting for her, staring at my black liquid, overhearing snippets of conversation, clicks on computer keys, rips from the bean grinder. I pulled out the book that I had brought to show her, and, one hour later, I finished it, with thoughts of happiness for my own private date. I began to think about scheduling this type of thing on a regular basis. Being alone takes getting used to, however, I feel the need to practice it more. Often lately, I've reached out for others, needing response, needing affirmation, needing, needing. And, God ... He hasn't been as important if I honestly take a look at relational time focus.

My forced reading of the morning talked about longings and how they pull constantly. The author talked about the role of Jesus, and how He wants to rescue us from our unhealthy patterns of desire, which lead to disappointment, a feeling of being empty, a reliance on others to take care of us. I can be susceptible to these patterns for sure.

Just recently, in fact, I asked a new friend for some distance. After becoming quickly acquainted on the Europe trip, sharing many levels of wonderful conversation, we tried to transplant it here. However, I felt uncomfortable for many valid reasons, namely conscience and obligation, and told him that we needed to go about our own lives more: he with his girlfriend and me with my husband, allowing them to be our rightful and primary listeners. (My husband knows about all of this.)

It was hard, though. No one knows more than Jesus himself how much I enjoy good conversation with smart, decent people. However, the need mixed with longing made me wary and ready for adjustment.

My (Jewish) friend was only a block away at another coffeehouse by himself this morning. Yet, I stayed and read about what Jesus thought was best for me. I enjoyed my time, my date, the warmth I felt inside of secret knowledge, admitted by appropriate and intimate means, by grace.

Sure, I still wonder at times, "What's the big deal about faith?" Others seem to be okay without it. Yet, I know inside that I've been touched and inflamed by the intangible Tangible. It'd be hard to forget about, tough to eradicate -- He's strong-willed, you know, a creator of what drifts toward himself.

Well, I'm quite tired now, ready for sleep. It has been a good week.

Good night.

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