Anyone who has reads Realisa has an idea of my thoughts on suffering. In a nutshell, there is great value in suffering. Adversity, as a tool, is effective. It gets the attention, at least it gets mine. I nicknamed it “the divine brick through the windshield” approach. And when I am way off course, The Son of a Brick Thrower clocks me on the head.

But Christ suffered for me. He suffered for all of us. I came to carry us away to his Father. And there, for me, lies the nuance.

In my scripture study years ago, a discussion started about art and that there are no iconic images of Christ laughing. The search was on for a smiling image of our Lord. I am drawn to this man and his very earthly life. The deep message in Christ’s life is that God so love this world…..THE WORLD….that he came. He took human form and live here on this creation of his. He is completely and absolutely enamored with this physical world.  Therefore, shouldn’t we be as well.

I picture Jesus and his disciplines walking all over the kingdom. There was no rush, no urgency. When they ate, meals took a long time. No Heavenly Happy Meals gobbled down as they jogged the road to Damascus. They sat down; they lingered and experienced life. People wanted to be in the presence of Jesus. Martha and mary argued about it and Jesus admonished Martha……he wanted her to slow down and listen.

I want to be in the presence of God and his creations are the most tactile, visceral, real avenues to experience him. The eddies of water made by the tail of a dolphin as it swims 12 inches from me makes me pause. It takes my breath away sometimes to split open a double chocolate chip muffin and see still melted chips inside. I think of Jesus planeing a piece of wood and running his hands along the grain, captivated by the inherent beauty of the force of nature.

These tiny nuances are like dots on a numbered puzzle. Pause at each one, lingering long enough for ink to bleed out onto the paper, connect each dot in order and the result is a highly detailed image of the face of God. He reveals himself in the minutest spots. Skip the dots, rush through and “press on” and you miss vital, necessary points. That picture looks irrecognizable and the mystery is fixed. And you shall never see the face of God.

Unless he throws a brick through your windshield.

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