Note: this is old school, first thought writing. There has been no editing, so know that it is as raw as it gets.
I am a ragamuffin; worn-out frenzied, failing at being even human sometimes, so hard on myself I crush out the very candle wick Jesus said he would not.
I struggle to forgive and accept forgiveness. I am a one man band on a self loathing pity tour. I am loved and deeply known by a God I far too often FEAR.
I am clean and sober, no longer held by the vice of active addiction, but I still hold too many secrets and regrets about the pain I caused so many dear ones who were held hostage by my drinking and drugging. My ‘daily reprieve’ is sometimes not enough.
I am stitched together by the grace of Jesus. He loves me deeply, so much so, I shudder to think that he knows ALL the evil and suffering I have caused and been through, all the dark nights of the soul and body that are all woven together and held by his golden thread. Jesus echoes in my mind, in my heart, constantly asking me just one question: “Do you truly know how much I love you?”
“Niles, do you know I love you exactly as you are not as you wish you were?”
Some days I get it; some days I don’t. Some days I need it; others I delude myself thinking I got this thing.
Today I need it. A friend committed suicide, falling to the deadly cunning of the disease of alcoholism, his darkness too much for the still small voice of Love. My friend is free of his pain now, free from us. Now…he is dead.
I feel dead today. But Jesus keeps whispering, “ragamuffin child, come to me, lay your rage, your pissed off, ungrateful, unhappy, leery soul upon me, and I will sit with you as you seethe and sink. I will hold you up as you let My Love seep into the cracks and crevices of your shattered heart. I will bring my light to bear upon you in warmth and tenderness. I will be your sobriety. I will be your love. I will be your life. I will be your Hope. I will hold you when you can no longer hold on…”
Jesus says these things to me as I realize my eyes are too dry to weep for loss and death, my heart too cold for prayers, my faith too old today to run the marathon called life…
Today it does not matter. All I hear in the din of my storm is the simple words of the children’s song echoing in the empty chamber of my heart and today it is enough: Jesus loves me this I know…