And Now, Our Feature Presentation…

After dropping the older two children off for their youth group activity, I had a few hours to myself.  What to do, what to do….

I had already finished with the grocery shopping for the next week, and I wasn’t really in the mood to window shop.  I wasn’t hungry, either.  And since I was nearly an hour from home, going there wasn’t a viable option.  Besides, the younger two were having fun with their daddy, so my presence would have been something of an intrusion.  They had him to themselves so seldom lately, it seemed.  As if an invisible thread were pulling me to a destination, I soon found myself at the movies.

Some find it strange, but I enjoy going to movies by myself.  I find that analyzing the characters without interruption, getting lost in the world created for me, to be quite a thrilling experience.  When the movie turns out to be less than worth my investment of time, I allow myself to feel the agitation for having wasted my precious fun money.

On this night, I had chosen well.  The movie is a rather fascinating look at a true event in history.  More accurately, it is a look into the life of a man in history.  A man who, with the help of a devoted wife and a rather unorthodox facilitator, overcomes.  I was disappointed that such foul language was used to elicit laughter from the movie-goers around me, for such a tactic I would consider overused and dreary even if the content didn’t offend me intensely.  But the story itself is a good one.  And so I allowed myself to become lost in it.

As I emerged from the theater, I noticed immediately that it had been raining.  It had stopped, but the wind was now blowing gustily, the lightening was still dancing, and the thunder was still rolling, letting me know that I’d missed out on quite a storm.  In the next moment, I pulled from the vagueness of my observations the memory of one or two distant flashes of lightening during the drive to the theater.  Funny how I hadn’t really considered that at the time.

I couldn’t help but sigh.  I absolutely love a good thunderstorm.  Sometimes I would sit and watch with wonder God’s latest poetic display, thinking of ways to describe what’s playing out before me.  What I’m seeing.  What I’m hearing.  What I’m smelling.  The very taste of the thickening and quickly shrinking air.  No words seem adequate.  Nothing ever quite encompasses it.  It’s as if the mighty maker of all is winking at me and patting me on the head with fatherly adoration, saying, “One day you’ll have the words.  But not here.  Not yet.”

I made the drive back to the youth activity, contemplating the crisp lingering scent in the late evening air—the promise of an eventual spring.  As I neared the appropriate exit, I was struck with an observation.

With nothing save a few lingering clues as to what I had missed while in the theater, God had commanded more inspiration—more awareness—than the two hours I had devoted to that movie.  That overall great movie, ripe with worthy content, with exceptional actors and near-perfect transition of scenes, fell decidedly short when stacked next to what I didn’t witness but knew had occurred.  I actually felt as if I’d missed out.

It was a good lesson for me.  It isn’t that I’ve decided to never again invest in a movie ticket.  Rather, I’ve decided to consider my options more carefully.  I am shamed to admit that, at the beginning of that evening, not once in all my musings did it occur to me to invest my time in God.  Here He had crafted a wonderful show for me, and I had been so consumed with finding entertainment that I had missed it.  God, forgive me!

And He did.  Immediately and without grudge.  I talked to Him while I waited for my children to reach the vehicle, and silently continued during the lulls in the boisterous conversations on the way home.

I don’t deserve it.  I can’t wrap my finite brain around it.  But my soul is His.  Roll credits.


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