I just got home, and en route I was thinking about my fancy new iPhone and the things I’ve been posting. Social media in general, really. From these pictures, from my statuses and what I’m tagged in, you’d assume I just walk around having the time of my life. Being out of work the last two weeks looks awesome. There’s been Tempe Town Lake girl-talks, water-fall jumping, margaritas (Morangaritas!!!!!) and general goofing off with my family.
And that’s all true, but what’s also true are the things I don’t post, and the things you don’t post, either.
For instance, the hanging out with my family? What you don’t see is that my auntie quit her job last year because the stress and anxiety of it was wrecking her life. She was able to spend time with us this weekend because she doesn’t have a job right now. That party I held two weeks ago, where all my old middle school buddies came over and drank wine and cracked each other up? And we posted this picture?
Man, we got together like that because the hero of our teenhood was murdered last September and we needed comforting on her birthday. And the silly hashtag “14hoursofChris”? All those goofy pictures you like of my brother?
Yeah, those fourteen hours were the day-pass out of rehab he earned. The boy is in rehab.
I post such pretty pictures of the urban garden I work at, and you like them, but what you don’t see is that I need that farm a hell of a lot more than it needs me. You don’t see that the farm is restorative for me, a sanctuary for me. The more scrapes from weeding I come home with, the more at peace my anxious heart feels. You read my dad’s blog and like his business advice, but you don’t see him walking up to the aforementioned farm and his tears welling up when he saw me by the pool, playing lifeguard.
Those misty eyes are because he knows the wreckage behind the pictures, and he felt it too; that the farm is a safe, hopeful place.
And Spaghetti-Swing Tuesdays? Friends, there have been nights we don’t even leave my house, we’re too engrossed in tearful confessions of our souls.
There is a brokenness in this world I can’t come to terms with. There is a brokenness in myself I can’t come to terms with. I mean, I’m unemployed right now because of it. I got testy with someone this weekend actually about the nature of his joking and kind’ve told him to cut it out. He obliged, but also asked how the view form my high-horse was. I laughed. “Oh, they don’t even let me near that horse these days.”
I just wanted, ehem, to be square with you. I know you’re aware of how cool you make your life out to look on Facebook and Instagram and all of that, and that behind those pretty things you post you’re a mess as well. And you’re probably lying awake at night, too, feeling like a phony. I bet you’ve had your fair-share of rage at the weight of this messy world and your messy heart. I bet you’ve shaken your fist at the stars too.
…And I bet you’ve been as astounded as I am at the common grace you experience. Betcha receive unexpected encouragement sometimes or fall into charmed friendships you don’t deserve, and you’re floored by all this goodness. I’ll bet you take those gems and cling to them, and you take pictures of them and post them and look at them later and reflect on how lovely your life really is.
You take those fourteen hour day-passes and run wild with them.
…I guess I’m not ashamed of posting such happy pictures, in that case. And I’m glad you post your happy pictures too.
“In that place where morning gathers you can look sometimes forever till you see
That time may never know, time may never know
How the lord takes by its corners this whole world and shakes us forward and shakes us free
To run wild with the hope run wild with the hope.
The hope that this thirst will not last long…”