So, who is this woman I married? Shy, a bouncing blonde ponytail, with her vivacious six-year-old daughter, a diligent caretaker of ten stray kittens. I had no idea who she was, not really. What man ever does to begin with? She loved Jesus, she was so beautiful I wanted to weep, I had two small children left to me by my first wife’s death from cancer; it was a match that had to be.
Who is she? I asked myself this when, as I was hopping her on one leg to her wheelchair, she said, cheek to cheek, “I’m glad this has happened.” I rested her against a wall, “What?” She said it brought us closer together and closer to God. It’s what we wanted. but I thought snorkeling on the Caribbean Sea and praying together again in the morning would be sufficient. No half measures with God. Living in Portland was like spiritual Sodom. Moving here, we were volunteering to make our lives available to God and now He is preparing us for what He has for us. I told a friend, jokingly, I wished my blog was “NOT changing from glory to glory TOO MUCH,” but he was relentless and responded, “Nothing is too much to be conformed into God’s image.” I wanted to tell him to lighten up.
I’ve seen Mexican men and women working incredibly hard here, not always true in America, where their votes are bought by food stamps. I saw a young gay man lounging by the pool. I remembered how I used to respond in my legalistic, judgmental church days. That is, “If I befriend him, he will think I approve of his life’s choices,” right? I know the Scriptures, but since my name isn’t Jesus, I treated him with respect. I tried to explain to him why Obama was not the savior of the world and why Trump was not the Beast of the Book of Revelations, even if he looked and acted the part many times. After I was more delivered from my judgmentalism, someone asked me what I would do if a homosexual walked into my church? I said I would sit him with the rest of the sinners. After all, God hates religious pride above all else.
We were shunned by religion as if we were gay, Laurie and I, because our sin was equally grievous, at least in the eyes of our church leader: we stood on principle against a false religious movement, that was invading by a coup attempt to take over our fellowship in South Africa. My church leader at the time sided against us. That was ten years ago, and that didn’t have a happy ending. That is why I write novels on spiritual abuse. My novel, “The Grass that Suffers,” is being readied for publishing, hopefully within a month.
I guess I’m getting into the habit of naming each blog. “Spiraling,” because after “launching” and “splatting,” we are now spiraling to a place of finding a new and present reality, physically, mentally, and spiritually. On the spiritual side, through our friend Lucy at the hospital, we met a group of beautiful miracle-believing Christians, and went to their church yesterday morning. That will be my next blog.