Smiling in Madrid, Spain during my Christmas existential crisis
I have an infectious smile. I am not bragging. It’s a fact. I’m all big lips and straight teeth and since we are visual creatures, my smile makes people feel better. My personality is often as infectious as my smile. Until, it is not.
Holidays often challenge my ability to be warm and infectious. They are like Kryptonite to my Superman. My low-grade existential crisis rises to the surface and the Hallelujah Chorus in my head sounds more like “Woe is me. Woe is me.”
It kinda’ sucks when that happens on an amazing life-affirming day like Easter. “He lives.” “He has risen.” “His sacrifice has liberated me from sin and death.” I know.
But, I am American. And my idea of holiday is largely based upon the media and popular culture. You know, Easter Egg hunts and big ham dinners and family and stuff.
Instead I am facing book deadlines and I have piles of dirty laundry on my floor (ooh, I can have a Clean Underwear Hunt!). I am a vegetarian so no ham for me. And we won’t even start on my being nearly a half-century-old with no partner and no children and nary an imaginary cat to be found. “Oh, woe is me.”
Big sigh. I am so full of crap.
Because even though my life has turned out differently than I thought, it is good. I have made some deliberate choices that allow me to travel and be an artist and live very comfortably. I don’t really even want children anymore and cats are sneaky. I know it. You know it. We all know it.
Sometimes I want to be like the people on TV. I suppose that’s okay. Just as long as I realize my reality is so much fuller and so much richer.
When Christ sacrificed his life for me over two thousand years ago, he knew exactly where I would be at this moment in time. He knew who would be in my life. He knew who would not be in my life. My life is no surprise to him and, yes, he has a plan for me (Jeremiah 29:11). And, yes, I believe the God I serve is just that personal (Psalm 139:16) “Even the very hairs of my head are numbered…” (Matthew 10:30)
So, like, I am actually smiling again as I type. Kryptonite is no match for the hope that lives in me! Have a Happy Easter everyone. I have a Clean Underwear Hunt to attend. :)