rising on the wings of Faith…
Groans too deep for words
Into the compassionate womb of your Love, Oh God
I bring my deepest needs, my strongest hopes, my greatest fears.
Give me tears for my grief, a voice that I might cry out unto You.
Give me words, that I might say what is most in my heart.
Give me courage, that I might always seek the healing You have to give.
Let me always offer my suffering to you, so that if healing does not come,
wisdom, justice, and compassion maybe its fruit.
A life offered to You, Abba God.
Mama today I bend my heart
to yield before Your love
I bow my conscious self to you
and give You all I am.
And all that I don’t know?
That too, in deep and darkened nooks,
in pits and crevices and cracks
in each unopened book…
I am Yours, Holy Mama,
Spirit of God so Clean,
Spirit of Wisdom, Comforter,
Giver of Peace Serene
And a lil mirror clear
I long to become
so here I am, my Mama dear
for You my heart does thrum!
Constance, one more quick post, and then we are off on the bikes! Yippeeee!!!
So…I am learning to not call my body/soul/mind/emotion clash a prison, or sentence, or monster, or any of those other things…Lady Grace has been quite active and specific in calling me into account and showing me that far from being the result of the conditions of the fall, and something that went haywire as I was formed, my being was very intentionally and soberly purposed by Them! Ever single last aspect!
oh, I was well acquainted with the Psalms which tell us of Their involvement and intricate knowledge of us…but I had pushed these things to a comfortable place theologically…as in there are many things that the Fall mars and wrecks…things that They have not intentioned, but have indeed accounted for with Their Grace. And I had classified my transgender being as one of those things: a result of the Fall and something to be redeemed and eventually cured when all things are made right. In the meantime, I despised myself. My body and its awful clumsy and large power covered in blechy hair and muscle…and that. And my heart…”weak and overly emotional and on my sleeve at all times side by side with streaks of snot”…and my soul…unwilling to hammer down on someone who needs correction but instead draw close and win them over, much to the ire of all the males in my life…I despised my swings from knowing I could do all things thru Jesus to thinking that They literally despised me for longing to have the body I felt I was denied…
…and worst of all? I thought, in my most secret thoughts, that They had done this to me, to punish me for being so bad…They had made this as scourging.
I am so thankful that They are overcoming all my evil with Their good! Truly…
…but this latest round of talks…She has been very specific, and letting me see some of the back story of what things I have said, or done, or written which have been helpful and life-giving and of service to others…and She has shown irrefutably to my heart of shame and self-loathing that not one of those things would have been possible were it not for the unique balancing of all the various aspects of my being which are seemingly in conflict but are in truth the warp and weft of the very tapestry of life and grace They are making me into!
My experiences in male roles, and the accompanying policing and disciplines (used in a putative sense), the intense efforts made by men when I was young in efforts to “make me tough” or “teach me to be a man”…and later being in male spaces in our culture hearing the naked expression of men to one another, witnessing the truly unconscious taking of privilege and the aggrieved hearts when denied…and hearing men talk, when one on one with me and thinking me male…just different or weird and yet strangely comforting to talk to…
…and my experiences on the outside, excluded by minds and bodies and actions…female roles and spaces and bodies…which heightened my observational skills, and sharpened my inductive and deductive abilities…and gave me an ear to hear…
…and the null…the razor place of horror and emptiness where everyone else had a place and a person, and I had nothing, like literally nothing…and my lil mind heard about the God shaped vacuum? and assumed that was this (it isn’t, by the way, that space is where our spirits are still born and in need of resurrection)…and so pursued God and was pursued by Them,…hey, it was either that or kill myself. Those were my options…
and now…to see…to feel the wisdom and the divine risk They took in intentionally availing themselves of the developmental processes in human biology to make me…and then make me…Charissa Grace…so see that They gambled on Their love and grace and mercy being enough, and They gambled on me to be so slayed by one glance that I would be hopelessly in thrall forever??
No…never again will I call it a prison…and thanks to my bff who asked me once if I could choose one or the other, would I choose that? Giggle…most of the time the Q is which would I choose…but wise wise DDH asked more would I choose, if I could.
I choose Them. I choose Their glory and Their Plan. I choose Their Indescribable Comfort and Joy.
And now to my topic: I believe that God intentionally has chosen Unknowing in regards to relationship with us!
Yes! I KNOW, right???? That sounds heretical, and sounds insane! I mean, God knows all, sees, all, etc etc…They are freaking GOD! And when the One God in 3 Persons and the 3 in One God decide to manifest in Their Oneness, Their THEM-NESS…why then we see that fantastical and indescribable Entity referred to by those who have been in Its Presence as “Lord God Almighty”…and it is too too TOO to the extent that the people who see this fall down as if dead, and their eyes perceive “monsters” with multiple wings and legs and eyes and mouths that fly around the Entity Lord God Almighty and scream at It louder than all loud “HOLY! HOLY!” (and other things…shiver).
So where do I get off saying that God chooses to not know vast portions of relationship with us?
Well, Ima tell ya a story…years ago, I was out and about on a rainy dark clammy morning, soaked to my bones and chilled, and miserable beyond words. It was Oregon rain, and my baby who grew up in Wyoming swears to this day that 38 degrees and rainy in Oregon is a million times worse than 20 below in Wyoming…and I was out in a loud, smelly, noisy truck! Driving it, using it to work with my body so I could provide for my darlings 5. I hate trucks. I hate machines, and they hate me too. They bite me almost everyday and leave me bloody and wounded…and they hurt my heart too with their bellowing and caterwalling.
And my mouth and mind were with God…hey, I had no where else to go, it certainly wasn’t because I was any paragon of virtue or spiritual giant! Lol! No…I was more like the bum at the off ramp of God’s freeway with my sign and tale of woe to elicit a few coins…
but I was trying to talk to the Father that morning…and getting no where, because I was so despairing and so frustrated…and Ima be blunt honest with you, kay? This is how I talk to Them, cus I figure They know my heart already, so if I fake it and talk all pretty then not only will I have the regular failures and sins to deal with but the additional sin of lying to Them!! (Cantcha just hear it? “Don Pardo, tell Charissa what she just won!!” <Pardo’s unctious voice>”Charissa…you just won LYING TO GOD!!!!!!!! No new car for you, girl! Nope…you get the nannygoat prize!” lol)
So, being bluntly honest with Father that day (and you here)… I finally had the following conversation:
Papa, why the fuck do I even bother praying!! It is just a litany of the same fucking complaints, the same awful feelings, the usual puking Pity Party! And the most frustrating things about it is You already fucking KNOW EVERYTHING!”
(yes, I f bombed to Papa…not proud of it…but you all know yo have done this, whether you have said it outloud or not…cus our hearts ARE F bombs, in their deceit and wickedness apart from Their Redeeming love)
Now, this is the distillation? Perhaps this rant went on just a bit longer? Long enough that I was hoarse and in a wrack of sobbing tears pulled over in a wide area beside the road because I couldn’t see?
And then as my sobs subsided (as they always did), as the tides receded and there was still the beach walk with Them to continue, I heard Papa sort of clear His throat and make a very gentle sound…so I listened.
“What makes you think I already know everything?”
“PAPA! Please!! Don’t fuck around with me today…I am not up to Your jokes and tricks and double-back hidey-behind pranks which result in your Wisdom being spoken to this fool! Everyone knows You know everything! It’s in Your bible, even people who don’t like You or believe in You know that You know everything (and by the way, I get super pissed at those idjuts who say they don’t believe in You, and yet ignore that You must be in order to not believe in…but that is a different rant!)!
“Does it? Does My Word say that?”
Constance, I have learned that when They ask you a Q like that it is best to shut up…and re-listen!! For the Bible is living, and so are we…and as we live and grow, so too the Word unfolds to us heights and depths and breadths that are there always, but visible only when we are in just this place…at just that time!
Papa said “What if I made a deal with Myself, with Jesus and Lady Grace (whom back then I referred to very impersonally as “the” holy spirit, and objectified Her)…and in that deal I decided that I would agree to “not know” vast territories of you and your life and existence…so we can have the Pleasure of joint discovery? After all…We have “unknown” all of your sins and iniquities in Our gifts of Mercy and Grace and Redeeming Metamorphosis…
“Think about your own self, with your own children…which is better…when you drag something out of them, or when you spy from a distance and figure things out…or when they come to you, unexpectedly and all on their own…in just that moment when you are feeling lonely and unnecessary to them or their life…and they begin to tell you their insides!
“The way that feels…the joy and gladness…the sense of miracle and wonder…and the way those things are your treasures and in your forever treasure box?”
and as soon as He said this I was PIERCED!! Whole volumes of reality clicked in for me…experiences lined up, and a whole new way of looking at Them was before me…so I laid down my f bomb boxing gloves, and instead asked in my open-faced and heart showing way…
“..Papa, is this true? How can You not know…but it FEELS true to me!!” And essentially He spoke to me about something I have called since then “Intentional Unknowing”. They chose to limit Themselves in many ways in regards to us….They have given us Free Will, and given us many other things that They have the ability to take back, but because of who They are, They never will, and thus “cannot” take back!
When it comes to our lives…our fears, our hurts, our joys and hopes? They can only know the depth of our specificity if we tell Them!!
Well, the rest is very funny, cus as soon as I grasped all this, I told Papa that I was gonna chirp and chirp forever and He was gonna regret ever telling me He wanted to know me! LOLOL (Hey DDH, can you relate??? giggles…or my baby out there?? or my own Daddy long dead…he is nodding in heaven and knuckle-bumping with the Father in solidarity, having endured the never ending Charissa chatter-flow! lol)
And I leave you with this: God has filled His word with countless exhortations to pray…and we in our foolishness and religious dumb-assery have turned these pleas to talk to Them into duties to be performed in order to merit Their activity on our behalf giving us what we think we want!
Well, see it a bit differently…see Them, as you would your own children, pleading with us to talk to Them!! Let Them into our lives, into our thoughts and heart! They are hungry to know us!! They long to be given something that They cannot have in any other way, than that we give it to Them!! And then when you go to pray, do not think of Them as big know-it-alls who are checking things off Their list and tallying our score and computing our “answer to prayer effectiveness quotient!”
No…They are moms, hearts bleeding joy that Their babies are speaking to Them! They are dads, who so deeply yearn for the sharing of Their children and that dialogue which makes every sacrifice an honor and every blow a privilege!
And you wanna know something more? You yourself will come to know yourself better…and Them better too, cus They actually like to conversate!! They will talk back, you know…you did know that right? Right??
“Pray without ceasing” can be read as “Whaddja do t’day ‘Rissa??? Huh? Huh? TellMeTellmeTellMe!!)
Okay…I’m outta here for now…so how bout this? Shut off the computer…go for a walk…and chatter like Charissa!!
All my love and heart to you, and I can’t wait to hear your stories!!
Good morning Constance…today I ran across this prayer by the amazing Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Won’t you take a look with me…and then set your spirit to be committed to becoming! If you profess Jesus, then join in directly to his prayer…and if your conscience leads you otherwise, uncover the intention and will within the prayer, and align with that.
The world is always a better place when our sin is diminished, our struggle to overcome evil is assisted, and God is near!
“Lord Jesus, come yourself, and dwell with us, be human as we are, and overcome what overwhelms us. Come into the midst of my evil, come close to my unfaithfulness. Share my sin, which I hate and which I cannot leave. Be my brother, Thou Holy God. Be my brother in the kingdom of evil and suffering and death. Come with me in my death, come with me in my suffering, come with me as I struggle with evil. And make me holy and pure, despite my sin and death.”