September 19th, 2004


Away message

So I've been gone a while.

Showing up for work, talking to people and going to lunch, jotting an email or journal entry here and there. But inside, I've been gone. It's funny how a lot of people don't notice, as long as they're getting what they want and nothing is getting in their way. I'm the same way myself a lot of the time. And some people do notice but don't say a word. How do you? "You're not really here, are you?" I'd have brushed them off anyway, and maybe I have.

What's interesting is how long it takes me to realize that I'm gone, that I'm a shell walking through the days, that I'm ordering my life around garbage, that anything with meaning is being shoved away because of pain or fear of pain. There's a lot you can still do when you're gone inside. I can keep going, in many ways more frenetically than I did before. I can stay entertained, stay productive, give everyone including myself what we think we want and what we say we want. It's easier than being present, really. Being gone is low maintenance, and the demands of being real or connecting with others just slide right off. I'm entitled, right? I'm busy and I can't do everything—never mind the fact that, regardless of my circumstance, my busyness serves as just the dodge I'm looking for to excuse and justify being gone. Sua sponte. "I chose this."

I'm tired of being gone now. I want to apologize to my life and everyone in it for treating it like shit, even if it never showed. And God, You I have treated worst of all:
Against you, you only, have I sinned
   and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
   and blameless in your judgment.
It's a good time to be thankful for Jesus, to know who He is, what He's done, what He's doing, and the hope He's promised. He can rebuild anything I've destroyed; He will give back the years the locusts have eaten. They didn't eat them by accident—that was judgment. And still He redeems, still He restores.

Living is harder than dying. Hope is heavy and light. I'm back now, I think.
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    exhausted exhausted