I was standing in the worship service with all the other congregants.
Music was pouring from speakers and words were up on a screen.
Some were holding their coffees in distant participation.
Others had hands raised high, proclaiming what was being bellowed.
Some stood quiet, worshiping in their own private way.
I saw the babies who were killed after Jesus' birth by King Herod.
Yeah. Just right there.....right when I'm trying to offer up an incense and stammer through lyrics of truth...
My mind is filled with the thoughts of those boy babies found in Matthew 2 - who were put to death because of the fear and jealousy of an evil king.
How soldiers with hellish orders barged homes.
How babies were stripped from screaming mothers.
How the youngest were wide-eyed unaware of what they were about to endure.
How the oldest of them were shrilled with terror.
My heart pounded and so did my fist.
Instead of my mouth filling with praise...my eyes pooled with tears.
And my throat ached like it did in Bournemouth.
And I could barely bear the sorrow.
Now.... sitting at my writing desk, just punching keys explaining, I'm doing so through a foggy lens of eye moisture.
Tears have streamed and my sadness is of the deep, deep sort over this event.
And it makes me wonder....why in the world I'm struck and panged so randomly by visions of this variety. Why I hear and see the details of the debauchery from thousands of years ago.... all the way to now, when others skim over it and move onward with life in bliss.
I do think the pen has something to do with it.
Those who want to write, and woo the hearts of people - they should really feel the details.
It doesn't make scribes special - it just makes them tuned.
Christian artists should never be afraid to deeply feel.
Painters, poets, sculptors, weavers of any kind - they should have antennas to the raw essence and roots and insides of the extremes and all in between.
I totally get the fear of it, however.
If we look at certain stories in the Bible, or we stare too long at the awful things going on in our world today - we may think it will squash our faith and steel our joy. We may fear that it will counter what we know of a good God.
I get that.
The skeptic here - understands.
But I can tell you that every time I have allowed myself to feel deeply and see thoroughly into the crazy polars of life - and I start to fall off into the abyss of unbelief or indifference....
He reveals Himself.
Somehow. Someway. Every single time.
And I almost always then - feel compelled to pen it out. To pen out awareness, alertness, or a truth of restoration.
I don't know the whys of life. I still stand with fist lifted in tense anger over the terrible issues of the ages. I'm still somewhat frightened to really look upon the truth of what's transpiring around the globe. I still waver.
But I always end up assured of His presence in it...
And I always end up wanting to write it out.
If you're a creator of any kind.... ask the Lord with me.... to allow you to feel, while still holding on to faith.
What might come from inhabiting that combination....
Just quite possibly could change the world.