An interesting thing happened last week. So interesting I’ve basically told all the people closest to me, and I’m going to tell you now.
Here it is. Ready?
A nice boy asked me out.
Jokes aside, this sort of thing doesn’t happen to me often (i.e. ever). I’m not the “nice boy” type. (I told my brother this once, a sort’ve smirking, “Christian boys don’t like me”, and he said, “Jess, you don’t want them to like you.”)
Anyway, this friend of a friend recognized me at work, asked where I’d been (not at church, Nice Boy…) and then added me on Facebook. I was like “HOW DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM” but I also was super giddy.
He asked me to drinks this past Friday night, and leading up to it I had this weird experience where I kept thinking of all the things I want to defend about myself and then realizing I’m not actually sorry for them. I just wanted to clean up a little, make myself and my lifestyle more presentable, and then evoke someone’s curiosity. Here I am though, this totally messy person with incomplete ideals and questionable coping methods.
I was reading the label of a Nawgan bottle the other day and became totally infuriated by its claim that they “ditched the calories” so you can drink it without guilt. Excuse me, Nawgan, but are you implying that we ought to feel guilt when we do consume calories? What? I wanted to die as a teenager when I ate more than six hundred calories a day, and its been too long and difficult of a road healing from all that for me to ever support a business that embraces this food/guilt association. I threw the bottle away, brewed coffee instead, and realized that no, I do not feel shame when I eat. I started thinking of all the other things I wanted to defend besides my body, and realized they don’t need my defense either.
That I never had braces I’m not going to apologize for, because it never needs a defense.
And for the things in my life that do require a defense, I’m simply not qualified to give it.
I’m not unapologetic because I don’t care. Quite the contrary. Its not that I’m excusing it all. I just know I’m not even capable of pardoning my behavior, my broken heart, or anything.
When Christians talk about resting in the idea that God’s already taken the weight of a person’s sin upon Himself, I don’t imagine it as the kind of rest you skip into. Its more like when you’re exhausted from working all day, having gone out drinking the night before, and you come home to your tiny studio apartment and the only thing your blurry eyes can make out is your bed. Its the kind of rest where you’re so tired you don’t even wipe off your mascara, or take off your bra; you just collapse into bed and pull the covers over your ears. Its the only option you’ve got; you’d fall asleep at the bar if you went out again.
That sleep, that empty-handed, totally desperate sleep, is more along the lines of what resting in God’s hands feels like.
I just know I can’t defend it; its not in my hands to defend what needs defending. And what doesn’t need defending, I’m not going to bother with anymore.
<Not sorry about being vegan.
<Not ashamed of being a train wreck.
<Not ashamed of resonating with Jack Kerouac.
< Not ashamed of loving a rat, or of my broken toe nail. (Flip flopped feet don’t belong in the horse arena, kids.)
Grace is a good thing. Our God is a good one. This life is drawing us closer to Him, by whatever nerve-wracking and heart-wrenching means necessary.
P.S. the date went well.