THERE’S A SAYING AMONG THE PREACHERS OF OLD. Come Monday morning—or rather, come every Monday morning, they begin writing their resignation letter.
Not too long ago I had this alluring, lucid dream. I dreamt I cut the umbilical cord that kept me attached to the computerized world—this media saturated augmented false-reality which we are ceremoniously indoctrinated into believing—and then dove into a pool. From underneath the shadow of swaying palms I gazed up at the sunlit world, listening to the aroma of music as it penetrated, like the muffle from a seashell, into the chlorine blue—pretending like all of this…my bizarre interim with the Truther Movement in its variant of patterns…never happened. Come Monday morning, every Monday morning, I sit and relish in that dream. I often contemplate what that moment will be like, after I pull the plug, after I dive head-first in the pool, and then float within the watery underworld watching the bubbles rise past my eyes—just holding my breath, numbering the bubbles, feeling the sensational touch of water as it shrouds every arching curve of my body, and waiting to be left behind from the times I find myself in the world above.
THE KIDS CALL THEM “UNBOXING PARTIES,” I THINK. Whatever, it was a box on my doorstep, and we were all eager to discover what was inside. My twin sons ceremoniously took part in the opening. But for four-year olds, pomp and circumstance can be attributed to tying one’s shoes. Anything and everything deserves to be a parade. I knew the box would be particularly special when the delivery man had me sign for it rather than just ringing the doorbell and making a run for it.
Eric ripped off the tape and then Ira said: “Look, it’s your book!”
MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW THIS ABOUT ME, but for nearly a decade of my adult life I was a nationwide “renowned” wedding photographer. I rarely talk about it anymore. History has moved on without me. It is by my own decision and design—and I am gratefully forgotten. Based out of Long Beach, California, I was “commuting” to work almost every weekend through the portals of an airport terminal—not forgetting thousands of additional miles logged by rental car. New York, Washington DC, and Boston, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, Alaska, Maine, Boulder, Colorado, and everywhere in-between. Even Mexico. I probably photographed this great continent of ours dozens of times over. The earth from 30,000 feet up filled in countless hours of philosophical or religious inquiry. Why I was rarely hired in my hometown of Los Angeles is a mystery which is left for God alone to explain.
AS THE WEEKS CRAWLED INTO THE AGONY OF MONTHS, loyal friends began to trickle into the Apostle Paul’s hellhole with fragile hopes of shining a light upon the dark days of imprisonment. His resolve however would ultimately be strengthened in the unlikeliest of accomplices. Sometime in 55 or early 56 AD, Onesimus paid him a visit. Onesimus was a slave. More precisely, he was a runaway. Paul’s jail cell in Ephesus was some 150 miles away from Colossae, the whereabouts of his plight, and it is no large leap of imagination to speculate, or rather conclude, that Onesimus had either stolen his owner’s purse before beginning his journey or had similarly funded himself along the way. Such offenses were not easily forgiven.
WATCHING A DISGRACED 81 YEAR-OLD BILL COSBY—holding his cane while handcuffed and led to prison for what may prove to be the remainder of his life—brought me absolutely no satisfaction. His crime is certainly not justifiable by any social or moral standard. The law rightly requires that he pay for what he has done. But for many of us this is a somber moment, and I think that is a good thing.
I READ OF A VERY SAD CASE,
In a dark aboriginal race,
Invaded by white men,
Who went there to fight them,
And “civilize” all in that place.
IN A WAY, JOB AND HIS THREE FRIENDS were severely handicapped intellectuals. When Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar heard of the evil that had befallen him, they made an appointment together to mourn at his side. We quickly read: “When they lifted up their eyes, afar off, and knew him not, they lifted up their voice, and wept (Job 2:12).” Despite the universal application of their tears, they did not have the Major and the Minor Prophets at their disposal for theological guidance. Our blessed Savior would not arrive in the flesh for another thousand years and several added centuries to boot, which would immediately thereafter prompt the warmly welcomed Epistles from the Apostles. They did not even have Moses and the law to contend with. One might think they were fumbling around, slapping the walls while attempting to flip a light switch in the dark.