what i found

I am filled with hate. Love does not live inside me. I am a hard, calloused thing. Hate forms my thoughts, my defences.

I don’t know God, because I don’t love at all. I am emptied of love. Love doesn’t know me as home. Jesus it’s dark. It’s crowded. It’s lonely. It’s prideful, it’s careless, it’s selfish.

I sit between the back of the couch and the window, feet pressed down into wood, peering at flowers behind the glass. They’re closed, their petals are torn, colours fading. They were open yesterday.

Hatred is at home inside me. It’s comfortable. I didn’t even know it was here until just before, but now it makes sense as I remember the edginess, the restlessness, that shoot bullets at my heart and take pointed words and throw them at other hearts.

It is me. The battle is between light and dark, good and evil, hatred and love. I am fighting for dark. We fight for whatever lives inside us.

It’s true that light breaks darkness. But how do you love when you are filled with hate? 

When you find yourself begging the question, you find love summoning you: 



human jesus // spoken word

- spoke some words - 

He was too human. The Jesus in my head was glossy, and valiant. Not wrinkled and ordinary. 

 I realised that the Jesus I thought I knew was only my own ideal, 

and that an ideal is something that can never be personally known. 


anything, in this,

This -- it's where I left off. 

How anything is about knowing Jesus. 

Shopping and laughing and praying and reading and singing and writing and working and speaking and planning and playing and organising and preaching and listening and sharing and practising and washing and eating and meeting and gathering and remembering and giving and receiving and driving and stopping and walking and running and creating and designing and committing and loving and spending and saving and granting and breaking and growing and savouring and trusting and relinquishing and cherishing and thanking and baking. 

I said -- Jesus, forgive me for everything being about anything besides knowing You. 

I've wanted other things in all of them. 

So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognise what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. Romans 12:1-2

What is anything but to know You? 

When you're living to get through... you forget you're living to know Him. 

And He died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for Him who for their sake died and was raised. 2 Corinthians 5:15

We fight mental fires and feelings and we find ourselves getting through -- and we find ourselves asking why, and what is this auto-pilot life? 

When you're living to get through, you forget you're living to know Him. 

When you live to know Him -- you're no longer living to get through. 

When you're wringing out every gift of being -- baking and writing and playing, friendship and family -- you find yourself a bit soul-wrung.   

When you're wringing out every gift of being in an attempt to satisfy soul-emptiness, yeah, you find it to be all wrung-out and this soul still empty. 

You get to this heart of the whole thing and right where you are, here, now -- this is you meeting eternity in the present and knowing Jesus. 

You can know Him right here. In this. All within and through, this Way, Truth & Life. This Jesus, in this, you can know Him. 



A.W. Tozer brought it up, this segregation I've made between myself, the sacred, and the secular. 

Between with God and without God, being inside and outside, with the boy and without the boy, 

healthy and unhealthy, broken and whole. 

Who I am and who I am not. 

My mind is divided. My life is divided. 

I cry for unity, for oneness, for whole -- 

and all the while, this bleeding soul makes distinction that makes abandonment unavoidable. 

As if it were my own differentiating between life and death, right and wrong, good and bad -- that creates this empty space inside of me? 

Could it be that my tendency to separate one thing from another is why it seems like something has gone missing? 

I've stolen from myself what I thought had disappeared some other way. 

Would it be so simple? 

When I distinguish between the two and myself, it means that something will always be missing -- the sacred or the secular, God or no God, the boy or no boy, health or lack thereof, brokenness or whole. 

No matter my seeming desire, the separation I make between two means that something is always gone. Something is always not here. Something is always missing. 

As long as something is missing, I'm always scrambling to find it. 

I guess the question that's been flicking at the edge of my mind, my heart, this soul today -- is what if nothing is missing

What if nothing is missing? What if it's only what I've broken apart into two that makes two out of one? 

What's all these pieces in my hands? 

What's this holy God being three but entirely one? What's this, their calling to humanity to come into their oneness?  What's this oneness out of many? 

I'm holding all these pieces -- inferior or superior, sufficient or insufficient, talent or practice, close or apart, dream or reality, sky or grass, 

and oh, the distinctions I create

What if nothing is missing? 

All the missing in me -- all that I see I'm not?

What if nothing is missing? 



Years of asking the same questions finally escalated a few days ago with me being unable to do anything at all due to insufficient answers. "Why does it matter? What is the point? What is the reason?" 

I caved, there on the ground, beyond all shame for my years-long dilemma. I couldn't even pretend any more. The mask had just sort of fallen off. Years of battling what I was doing with a reason and purpose. Years of trying to twist every act and commitment into a reason for doing so. 

Shame behind me, I picked myself up off the floor. "Where are you going?" the boy asked. "To pursue God." 

I went out the back, and I spent a few moments pacing the concrete, gazing from sky to trees to sky, and then I remember mulling over the fact that it was like there was something in front of me, blocking me. Then I became aware of where I'd found myself standing: this red brick wall right in front of me. 

I can't move it, I said. 
I know, Papa said. But I can. I'll dismantle this wall, brick by brick. 

I took a step backward, and I looked up at sky, and acknowledged the thought in my head; I'd been contemplating doing something, and had internally asked, will it give me purpose

And then, clear, a voice sounded: But what if who you are is purposeful? 

These simple words rushed into me like a waterfall and they gushed out the fear and doubt. 

All these years, I'd been attempting to derive meaning and purpose for myself -- 

and He'd spoke and I was freed from my fear and shame about who I was and what I was doing. 

That was a few days ago and I'd been enjoying the ease and peace that I'd had ever since hearing those words. But, then, today, I started to doubt. Which made me worry. I started worrying I was slipping away from Papa again and that depression would wash in like a tidal wave and just when everything was starting to get better -- would it just fall apart again? 

I've been reminded of a greater truth that I'd forgotten, that I used to keep close in my soul. It's from the book of James, in chapter two, and it goes like this: 

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  

I'm reminded of Peter, when he stepped out of the boat onto the wild roaring ocean waters, and walked toward Jesus. When he started to sink into raging waters. How He drew him out. Asks him why he doubts. 

After all the storms, 
all the dark, 
all the healing,
all morning's rising's -- 

we find ourselves in another storm... 
oh, Jesus,
fix my eyes on You. 
Hand of God



I use this word a lot. Especially when I’m not going too well. “I’m not good enough.” My boyfriend would say that this is a favourite tagline of mine. “It won’t be good enough,” I’ll say. “It’s not enough.” “Am I enough?”
It’s such a transitory word. Illusory. Subjective. Elusive. Uncatchable. It’s haunting like that.
Your eyes catch on to it and you’ve got your arms outstretched, greed growing in those eyes. Enough. Oh, to catch it. To get your hands on enough and hold it. Oh, oh, so elusive. To strive for enough, you and I are guaranteed failure. To be good enough, to get enough, to be enough – if this is what you really want? Stop chasing it. Stop, stop, stop.
Why do we seek enough? I’d say in seeking enough, I’m seeking rest. Comfort. Reassurance. I seek enough because I see myself as inadequate. I’m striving to become more – what I call enough.
More, and enough, how are they the same thing?
When I think about what the word enough means, I question why I approach it with measuring tools. Enough? Has no standards. Enough? No requirements. You can’t hold a ruler up to its face, and no amount of rope will refer to its distance, either to you or from you.
What if I told you – and I am about to hear this the first time for myself – enough is the most accepting thing there is? What if I told you that enough rejects nothing and nobody?
Enough is yourself, the people around you, the world around you. Why do we seek to be enough? It’s who we already are. We’re a dog chasing its tail!
A dog chasing its tail.
I want to be enough. What we really mean when we say this is that we want to be more than we already are.
This page has been a journey for me. What I thought was enough actually refers to more. Let’s copy and paste what I thought described enough – when it really is talking about more.
It’s such a transitory word. Illusory. Subjective. Elusive. Uncatchable. It’s haunting like that.
More indicates that there is not enough. More indicates that what currently is, is not acceptable. More suggests that something else must be attained.
When I say “I am not good enough,” what I really mean is, “I need to be more.” This is the fundamental underlying belief in what I am saying.
I need to be more. More than what I am.
And at what point will more suffice as enough? Will it ever?
I am chasing more. I have never known more to reach an end. More never ends. I will always need to be more. As long as I crave more, I will never stop running after it.
Oh, oh. I thought my battle was with enough and it turns out that enough is not only my alley but a descriptor, my greatest acceptor.
I didn’t think I struggled with more¸ I thought I was only fighting to be who I ought to already be, but it turns out that what I really desire for myself is to chase more until I die.
All I can think is that if I keep chasing more, I will never be enough, but how does this even makes sense, if I am already enough?
But all I see is that I am less than, that everyone else is better than, and doesn’t that make me not enough? Will I ever understand this concept of enough?
Comparison. And enough doesn’t play this game. Comparison is the game of more, and I’ve shown up to practice every single day.
I am that committed.
I am that miserable.

I wish I could just stop chasing more. Just stay with enough. But I’m scared, cos, you know, then I might not be enough… 


..right here

I always idealised the life of the wanderer. You could run and roam and give in and give up and nobody would hold you to it. You could begin anew and you wouldn't have to settle any accounts, wouldn't have to make up or break up. There'd be a constant moving on, and you could be whoever you wanted to be because you wouldn't be afraid anyone would keep you accountable to anything. 

And I'm still living in the home my family owns, but to be honest, even though there's always been a place to lay my head, I've said it out loud, that it's not like home, and I guess I have to admit the truth, about me being a wanderer. 

I wanted to be a wanderer, because they can run away whenever life is too much to bear, and there'd be nothing or no-one keeping them anywhere. No ties, no chains, no pain. Wanderer's live out the romanticism of escapism and it's something I've been desperate to live in to, when all I can see is a bajillion pieces of existence that don't equate to anything like beauty and whole. 

Coming from a girl whose been wandering the homeland -- tears live inside me, and it only takes a word to draw them right up and out. Weariness has successfully overtaken my body, my mind, my soul. I don't know what I believe in, but I know that somewhere here there's a God more real than I envision him to be -- a God more real than the abstraction I speak to in the sky. 

I'm falling apart. I don't have any more dreams left, even the ones I left to sit quiet in me. They were there so long, I think they disintegrated. They were all for me, anyway. In the end, I was planning on using the world for mustering self-acceptance.  

Apparently when I most want to disappear -- this is when I most want to be found.

I'm afraid that if I stop wandering, I'll have nothing. I'd rather suffer the illusion of everything than be faced with a reality that could be anything. 

I'd rather string everything along in pieces than have it weaved into one dedicated whole, because I can leave pieces anywhere, but to walk away from something whole would be to walk away from myself. 

I'd rather a muffled illusion of friendship, dreams, and plans than a certain assurance of whatever life really is. I've been avoidant. Avoided facing up to people and things wherever possible, no matter the cost. I'll flee and move on, but never forward. 

I guess it's not where and to whom I travel -- but acknowledging where and with whom I am with, exactly as it is. 

When I most want to disappear, I most want to be found? Right, here. 


Jesus & a million

How years ago I'd stumbled into this: getting and becoming all the things I wish won't ultimately satisfy me. 

I'd followed that truth right into dark despair. Don't hope in this. That isn't the answer. Don't go there: it won't make you happy. It won't last. 

A simple truth can get confused when you miss living into a greater truth: the fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It's our handle on what we can't see. Hebrews 11:1

When you know deep in your being that no earthly possession or accomplishment will bring real fulfilment -- you stop hoping. But what was meant to happen was something beautiful, and it's what's finally gracing my spirit after all these years of questioning confusion: 

Hope in God -- and hope for a million things. 

We start with this essential holiness and nowhere else: hope in God

I spiralled down into dark when I believed that hoping for anything else was futile -- and all the while failed to grow into any hope in God. 

I confused hope in and hope for -- and I became hopeless in the truth I didn't fully understand. All these years and the other week I finally recognised it -- this hurdle that jammed itself right in my vision any moment I ever entertained the thought of something being good. Any time I ever considered looking forward to something, the barrier was put in front of me. And the other week I finally watched it come up, and I wondered what it was, and why it was there. 

All these years and it's been crushing me. When I would consider writing a book, or counting an assignment as important enough to care about, or making plans with friends, or starting a cafe out of a shipping container, or making food, or watching a movie, or playing a game, or exploring a place, or going for an adventure -- this fence-like barrier would pop up out of the ground of my mind and you know what? It didn't really even have to say anything. I knew what it signified: this isn't the answer. It won't make you happy. Turn away from it. A sparkle of hope ignited would blow out so quick -- I let that barrier speak silent to my mind every single time, and I never questioned it. I believed it was right, and I didn't want to focus on the wrong thing -- I didn't want to get carried away by something that would only end up disappointing me. 

Every time a whisper of joy would enter my mind, the barrier raised its seemingly caring head and silenced hope. I made a practice of rejecting joy, believing it was the right thing to do. 

I was confusing hoping in something with hoping for something, and me here stumbled through confusing depression. 

Lunch break on the beach and breaking waves recede and on a park bench I make the connection: 

To be truly hopeless -- is to recognise that nothing earthly is to be relied on for true joy and fulfilment... yet, to have no hope in Jesus. To know a truth but not the Truth

My hope barrier is growing weaker. My inner critic -- how the boy remembered me, it's not the holy spirit. 

It's starting with hoping in God,
and I'm finding myself trampling over this barrier. Hoping for things. 

"You must embrace your union with Christ, bravely surrender and trust that what's breaking and being lost is never the eternal, needed parts of you, but always the temporal, needless parts that were getting in the way of you becoming real." The Broken Way, pg 148  

I think I'm losing something by surrendering to the call for joy?  When I'm really becoming more real. Surrendering to the call for joy is choosing authenticity.  When I choose to look forward to things, when I choose to hope for them -- I am making room for disappointment. And that scares me. I am scared of being disappointed. Choosing not to hope leaves no room for rejection and disappointment. And it leaves no room for living, either. Choosing to live in the risky faith-embrace of God's action for me  leaves room for disappointment and rejection and imperfection. It makes failure a possibility. I'm so afraid of these things. I'm afraid of hoping and being left disappointed. 

I fear the abandonment that could occur. I fear hope abandoning me -- I fear giving hope power. When I give hope power, I become vulnerable. I become susceptible to exposure -- and a disappointed hope can lead to pride becoming very, very injured. I am a good protector of my pride. 

I remember days not so long ago when anxiety tore into me and I was a monster trapped inside and I began to say it, over and over: perfect love casts out fear. 

I said it over, and over, and it was like something holy pouring right inside, like grace to my spirit, like air and water and bread. Perfect love casts out fear. Saying it not in beauty but in damage. Speaking this out loud transformed my inside. When no willpower or strength brought me back, this illumination of Truth made breath and sight and life where there was a sleeping, numb, absent, rock-hard raging girl. 

Hope does not destroy me. Hope revives me. Hope is risky, and when I surrender to hope, I surrender control. I become vulnerable. 

When I hope in God, I find myself standing in a place that will never fall through. Standing on this foundation we call Jesus, I can hope for a million things -- 

and always be standing, even when what I look forward doesn't happen like I hoped it would. 

Hoping in Jesus, every failed hope will be a sinking into Him. 

Hoping in Jesus makes the risk of hoping for things kind of non-existent. 

When I hope in Jesus, it's like proclaiming over and over again that perfect love casts out all fear. When I hope for something brave, like tomorrow when I begin my first day of teaching rounds, I think that what I consider falling.... 

will actually be, yeah, a falling into Jesus, and that's it. That's just one embrace of grace for one cup of hope, 

and eyes to see a million people and a million things to hope for. 

One Jesus and a million lights that sink into a song of rejoicing.Jesu 


holding broken when you want to be held whole

Morning after morning I'd be the same, all through every day, 
trying to fix myself. 
Making right what's wrong inside. 

I woke early this morning, couldn't stand being stuck there with my mind a second longer - went outside and said God, I'm swamped with guilt. 
Opened Ann's book from beginning all over again, get to the end of the chapter and... it's clear. 

God is on the broken way, and it's my only way. This broken mind I try re-write like God, I've been adamant about the fixing, the restoring - and truth behold, I have to accept this broken way. 
How long I've been refusing. Me, so adamant - I will fix me. So badly I've wanted to fix me - re-create a broken mind, a broken body, a broken spirit. 

Accept the broken way... Coming to God as broken - and stop telling him how I'll fix it, stop re-assuring myself how I can re-make myself. 

After all this time, finally this morning it rings true. God doesn't want to see me trying to fix myself. He doesn't want me to come broken with a Fix-It hat and determination. 

He knows me broken and to come simply and honestly as myself - this is to come broken without the hat, 'cos I have no real qualification in re-making, un-breaking. 

Throat closed of guilt,
Wrought with defining shame,
Stumbling over self-hate and inadequacy and inability to self-create perfection. 
It runs through vein, anxiety - 
wispy fog closing the marked road to hope. 

I can't be who I ought, and the only hope I cling to is something long gone - some missing part of me, the state of peace and understanding - and I think everything will always take me there and yet slowly, the options sink into nothing. 

They're all mud already, anyway, all these professions to happy, to this lost state of being I can feel right underneath this empty. 

But to accept a broken way - would kind of be to admit to me losing. Yeah, I lost. Isn't this whole point of living - to put something good together? Why would I submit to being broken? Aren't plans about making goodness for ourselves - in ourselves? -
Now it turns out that maybe the first plan is to take a broken way? - is to say that I can't fix anything. 

First time I read all these pages of a road broken, the second chapter had me plunged into a kind of abandonment I hadn't experienced before, a separation between me and the boy I'd been walking earth with. All the words rung true, me in a space where loss and abandonment and grief grew so large in me there was nowhere to crawl and cry but Jesus, and he held me. 

It was a necessary surrender, that severing, and it was my first real walking along any kind of suffering. In a way, we'd chosen it, but other ways it was the only road. 

It was an entering, and the only way to survive was to bend into it, to cave right into the hands of God, and they embraced me like they hadn't in years. 

Boy and I reconcile and there's a picking up of broken pieces and now this is where I am, enough strength to carry them again and I'm hearing it somewhere, from heaven or deep inside? - put them down. 

They're cutting into me, like carrying their cutting edges against my skin is the only way to ease the shame inside, a balloon with too much air and edges into skin is the only way to shrink, release, enough air to breathe. 

Only way to survive has been to carry these rough, broken pieces - or maybe it's only 'cos I'm holding them that I think pressing them in to me is the only way to breathe. 

Maybe if I put them back down there on the ground the air would clear again, like that first breaking when the world somehow crashed down and restored itself all in one instant and both worlds were simultaneously existent. 

What difference does insisting on carrying and mending and analysing my broken make, anyway? Sure, I can justify my efforts to make greatness out of insufficiency - I can worship my effort to make wholeness out of broke - 

but it's been years, and shame still rings out. Guilt droops my head. My mind isn't capable of fixing me. I can't control every anxious thought and depression I can't solve. 

I can't solve my mind. How many years I've sought an equation? They lead me a little while, and they never turn out to be the answer. 

I don't think I heard what she said the first time, but I think I'm hearing what's Ann's saying now: walking with our broken and no fix-it hat is the right road. 

That is such a shameful thing to do. Not even trying to be okay. We can sympathise with struggle - but only if you're doing what you can to make victory over it. 

Is taking the broken way really saying that we're giving up the fixing? There is so much shame in that statement. I am ashamed because I know what you're thinking - if you stop trying, you are not worthy of any love. You are not worthy of any grace. If you stop trying to fix you, I will give up on you. 

All the not good enough I wish I wasn't - I've taken to agreeing with you, that I'm falling short, and inside I can't let down my guard and I'm working too hard at willing soul perfection and it's just. not. coming. 

Starting to see that laying down broken is brave, not noble. I hadn't seen the shame before, but I'm seeing it now. It's saying that I can't do it, can't fix it, and it's saying that I'm not even going to try and fix it anymore. That is the greatest failure we can perceive - giving up. Is this really what we're called to do? Give up

It's not only weak - it's disgrace. Dis-grace... or is it? Disgrace is shame from dishonourable action - 

and Grace-giver? He's the one saying it to me, lay down the broken things, and stop trying to fix them

Laying down broken pieces of me is weak - and it is grace. 

To keep carrying me broken and making plans and equations of fixing me? This is to dis grace. To reject grace, to say it isn't good enough - that's what I say when I insist on me and my Fix-It hat that has never even gave an indication that it can do any kind of fixing work. 

I've heard they call Jesus king of an upside down kingdom and I'm seeing it here, where to hold and spend a life attempting to fix broken things is noble and worthy - is actually to dis grace, and more importantly - to reject wholeness. 

Yeah, turns out that right side up, the upside down kingdom of Jesus is putting down the broken me and saying yeah, it's really broken and unfixable, Jesus - this is receiving grace, this is putting ourselves in the embracing arms of wholeness.

And it turns out that in our strange earth world, accepting gifts is frowned upon. 
No-one frowns down on anyone opening a gift they haven't bought for themselves. 
It would seem strange, come Christmas time, we all purchase and wrap a present, put in under the tree - and Christmas morning we all grab what we put under the tree and unwrap it for ourselves. 

What a joke. 

Apparently it's how we're meant to live, though. According to everyone but Jesus. 

There's a lot of resistance in me. At least if I'm trying to fix broken me, it's not just sitting there. 

But if I'm trying to fix broken, how will it heal

I can see goodness, freedom, no more provability about who I want them to think I can be. I'm not the person I wish I was, I'm not the person I know I ought to me. First, I can admit this. 

I can't fix myself into the person I need to be. 

Wholeness is really a healing of our brokenness. 
And maybe a healing of our brokenness is really a holding of our brokenness - 

not my holding, 
but the broken one who is whole holding all my broken,

'cos I fully put it down on the ground,
and he saw it there and swept it all into him and me, too. 

I'm still broken, and that's the whole point of a perfect God breaking. I can be with him, even though I'm broken. 


a broken God

All the ways they explain the God who made earth and us: they say he is perfect, they say that he is three and one at the same time, they say that there is nothing greater or bigger or stronger. 

They say that he suffered all our sins. 
They say he was perfect. 
How does perfect and sin go together in one man? They say he was tempted by all the things that we're tempted by. They say that he didn't give in to any of the temptation. 
I give in to the temptation. 
A perfect man who suffered my sins is not perfect. He is broken. 

If I told you God was a broken man, would you say that is a wrong thing to say? Would you scuff your feet uncomfortably? 

If I tell you God is a broken man, will you stare at me weirdly? Will you shake your head angrily? 

God is a hero. Hero's aren't broken. God is a rescuer. Rescuer's aren't broken. 

But a God who takes my place and becomes what I do wrong? Where is the perfection in this? He is so broken. We know what kind of place this is. We know the kinds of things that go on here, in dark places and where everyone can see. A God who took all these pains on himself is a God so wrecked you'd hurt to look at him. 

The servant grew up before God - a scrawny seedling, a scrubby plant in a parched field. There was nothing attractive about him, nothing to cause us to take a second look. He was looked down on and passed over, a man who suffered, who knew pain firsthand. One look at him and people turned away. We looked down on him, thought he was scum. But the fact is, it was our pains he carried - our disfigurements, all the things wrong with us. We thought he brought it on himself, that God was punishing him for his own failures. But it was our sins that did that to him, that ripped and tore and crushed him - our sins! He took the punishment, and that made us whole. Through his bruises we get healed. We're all like sheep who've wandered off and gotten lost. We're all done our own thing, gone our own way. And God has piled all our sins, everything we've done wrong, on him, on him. 

A perfect God with bruises, sins that ripped and tore and crushed him. This is God. He has bruises. He is disfigured. He wears secret pain you're ashamed of. Everything wrong with you is wrong with him. 
How is he perfect? He holds all our darkness. He didn't just take mine and yours as well. He is covered in sin of every human who ever filled space in this earth. 

What perfect God wears uncountable bruises takes shame we claim unspeakable? 

How can he refuse every temptation and still end up owning all the darkness in himself? Does refusing temptation make him perfect even though he became all our imperfection?  

That's what I want to know, that's where I'm at right now - I know that Jesus never did anything wrong. I know he lived what none of us would've ever done, no matter how hard we wanted to try. And I see how that makes him perfect - and how the law none of us lived out got fulfilled in him. 

But every person he comes across, compassion is him becoming their pain, their disfigurement, dissolving their shame - and the cross is the ultimate break when the bruises and hate from all of us pierce body and soul of the God who always chose to partake in the broken spaces of every womb-knitted creation he came across. 

I know he never did anything wrong - but he chose to become all we've ever done, and doesn't that look the same? 

What if God came to earth to be broken? What if God came to earth to be broken by us - because to partake in our brokenness was the way for us home. 

What if this was his real sacrifice: not to bleed on a cross, but to become a broken man by accepting the dark pain in us that had never lived in him? God is great and strong and big, immeasurably - and God coming to earth was him choosing to be wrecked like us, damaged, dirty. God became a man and what did he do? He faced people full of disgrace and shame and he looked in their pained eyes and he told them that he didn't condemn them - and he was always moved by compassion, and all that means is that he partnered them in their pain. When God takes pain into himself, shame disappears. God has no shame. Shame is fear of being rejected. People find God facing them and he kneels into their pain and in the sharing of their pain, their shame disappears. 

Maybe you can't argue out and compare broken and perfection. Maybe broken and perfection can be the same thing. Maybe if you're God you can be broken and perfect. Maybe if a perfect God can break, then a broken person can be perfect. 

Why would a perfect God break? Perfect things don't break. But a perfect God breaks on crosses every day for broken people, freeing them from their shame, 

and fully perfect things will always choose to suffer for the broken, 
because perfect things are so whole that they'll suffer brokenness for the ones they love every day of their lives. 


i don't want to accept God's enough because i want to be important enough to make my own enough. 

i want to do something important. i don't want to be where i am today, and i don't want to be where i'm supposed to be tomorrow. i want to be in important places doing important things. 

i forgot how the important thing is being in the unimportant place i am today with the people that are also here. me refusing to be present is me refusing to be intimate with God; me refusing to be present in the lowly place i am today with the people here, is me refusing the most important thing there is: intimacy with God. 

i've got it in my head that there are people out there doing things that matter, in places where they need to be. i've forgot that them doing things that matter in places where they need to be - is simply them being present with the people around them, wherever they are. 

i'll be content nowhere and nowhere will be important enough, not even my greatest idealized fantasies. i'll never save the world through something good if i choose to focus on the imaginary above the real before me today. the real before me today is the only place i was made for - there is no living out of a fantasy. i'm always wanting something else, something more - i'm not happy here? i despair where i'll be tomorrow? 

i said today that i'm feeling depressed - when what i am is discontent? when i want to make myself enough because i want to deem myself as important enough and what i need to accept is that: i am not important, and there is no place i can go that will make me more important, 

and i need to accept that i cannot make my own enough. i leave everyday wishing i'd been more, given more, achieved more, succeeded more, loved more. 

i leave everyday regretting that i'd been there. 

the fading cross on my wrist, i'd said it stood for the choice to stay here and suffer for love. i forgot what that meant. for awhile the present was the only place i could bear to be because the loss i'd suffered destroyed all the hopes that lived in my daydreams. but now the daydreams all woke up again and the present is the place i avoid, and it's all to my detriment, 

and could i admit it at all? that i can't be enough? that i'm not important? that what is important is choosing to stay present and be with the people who are here. that nothing else counts because intimacy with God is what we were made for - this is the plan God has for us - and intimacy with God only happens here. it doesn't happen in my escapism, in my self-importance. intimacy with God only happens in my acceptance of the present. 

would i accept his enough - accept my own unimportance?

would i? 
would i?

would i stop fighting to make my own enough? 
would i admit that enough has already been made? and my acceptance is choosing present-ce?  


marked under skin

So what compassion means -- is to feel somebody's pain while they are feeling it. 

And that's what you did all the time, Jesus? You hurt all the time

The car in front of me followed the round-a-bout around? Had to stop when a car flew out right in front of him. My window was down and I heard his yell, his complaint, arms flailing. That car zoomed round paying him no time of day. Papa? His anger - I don't want him to have that. Those words, they ended up being choked out - I was crying? I was crying how I cry for me - that ache inside? I never felt it for someone else before? I tried to say words for this person up ahead in that car and I've got tears and why is there this ache? 

Is this what compassion is? I'm kinda dazed, driving past those rolled barrel of wheat things - compassion is to feel their pain as if it was your own - and it becomes your own.

And if you read gospel then what you read is that anytime Jesus ever did anything - he was moved by compassion? That word salvation, its Greek sozo? Means wholeness. Salvation has never been about getting off easy? Salvation is a simple story: compassion. Compassion is a simple story? To co-suffer. Suffering is a simple story? To break. Breaking is a simple story? To become whole. It is startingly simple and it is blazingly - like hell - painful. 

Jesus bent over in the dirt, writing with his finger? While some gang of leaders stand with rocks to throw at this woman who, yeah, they'd found unclothed with some man? They wouldn't let up, kept nagging Jesus. He said the person who hadn't done anything wrong -- they could throw the first stone. Moved with compassion? He didn't understand her pain. He didn't love her in her pain - don't tell me that. He had her pain. It was his own. Maybe when he says I don't condemn you either - he is professing his shame? Jesus is wrought with their shame - Jesus is beat with rejection and humiliation -

wait, wait, wait. Jesus, when they come? He's sitting. They announce the stoning? Jesus bends down into dirt, writing. Then he stands? Says the perfect person can throw the first stone? Then he bends down again, they walk away - and he stands and speaks to the woman. 

Sits, bends, stands, bends, stands. There is something cruciform about this, its not coincidence - and how this lady stands? How they've stood her in plain sight of everyone, and she stays? 

And what these people are even saying? 'Moses, in the Law, gives order to stone such people' - Jesus here, he wrote that law on that mountain, pressing his finger into stone? - gave it to Moses? 

When they say this, that's when he bends into dirt and writes with his finger, writes into the dust He formed us out of? Jesus is standing in front of this crowd, pulled from some stance of shame, waiting for rocks to be pelted, slammed, smashed into him? Do they know his pain? They think this woman stands alone? He's wearing her shame and his chest is pummelling with the heart beat that threatens the break and how she's barely covered now, how they're covering their eyes at what she can't disguise? He's bending and writing and standing and bending and writing and standing - 

and yeah, wrought with shame and beat with rejection and humiliation - when he says does no-one condemn you?

No-one, Master

"Neither do I. Go on your way. From now on, don't sin." To break - to become whole - 

the dust stone comes out of? The dust we're made of. Stone commandments and stones to throw and dust to write in, dust to form Man out of - 

how she was completely unhidden? How they'd broke into her broken and left her standing - and they all walked away? Why? Why did they all walk away? 

The sinless one among you, go first. They all walked away... beginning with the oldest. I'll walk away a million times - not out of conviction? Out of shame

The woman was bleeding inside, those wrecked edges she'd kept bandaging over? They pulled her in and while they were dragging her across the temple floor over to where he sat - the edges in him tore all up, blood dripping inside him and where she wore old bandages? It flowed out of him. We saw it pour out his hands - but the bleeding started way before then. Way before When. 

I idealised my broken, made it unlike any shame - and walked it away every, every time. I romanticised my broken to the extent that I made out like I thought it was beautiful? When all I did was hide it, hide from it, in shame. My broken never saw the light of day - and you and me never both bled into Whole. 

I'm the one always walking away, not out of conviction, but out of shame. Still carrying the stone. 

As if I thought you could con authenticity. I've hid behind broken without entering it. I've explained broken, complained broken, accentuated broken with tears. I've maintained my own ideal of broken precisely to avoid admitting that broken is what I'm most afraid of and what I am most trying to protect myself from. Every vague proclamation of my broken has really been my own careful deflection of any arrow that had power to pierce my unbroken. And now I see, now I'm broke and I fight the edges of me where blood drains... I fight the bleeding edges for control

I'll tell you why, maybe you already know? Why those men, oldest first, all walked away? "At the core of every one of our issues is this attempt to construct our identity on something else besides Christ."

You don't even dig very deep before you realise this shame you didn't even know was shaping your makeshift identity. The things I've painted all over this skin identity, how I've known myself to be too far from the ideal I insist I've got to be - and I pretend to you like I'm there, like I'm my ideal, like this is where I want to be? Like I've pulled this over me and wear it like invisible flame: I live out of a need to prove to my 'rivalry' that I am worthy of what I desire - even though I don't think I'm worthy at all. 

The woman is bleeding and she's been covering it up so long? And Jesus walks up to her and he says I don't condemn you either - and she sees the blood pouring down the edges of him. Same bleeding edges as hers? 

Oldest walked away first? The rest followed? 
That bandage isn't really sticking through all that blood. It's kinda flapping up on the edges, sorta peeling, blood seeping out. 

She might've walked away with her bleeding edges that day, in the wake of all the rest of them. Someone right there on the ground, though? He broke right then in all her same places. 

He suffered her pain exactly there - exactly where she stood was exactly where he bled.

Our own salvation, sozo? Is not really our own at all. These bleeding edges... we don't choose this sacrifice? 

We're literally, grace-fully, broken into it. And it hurts like hell. And I'm ashamed of my broken, and I hide my broken and I'll be bandaging these wounded edges like there's no shame. 

We are broken into this sacrifice of compassion. Compassion, co-suffering, breaking, whole. I thought it would be a one-time thing. A few hours on a cross and then arise! Wake up! Resurrection! 

I'm still trying to get a handle on it, this: it's an every day thing and we'll learn our name out of our co-suffering. Jesus was serious: suffering marks us, marks our lives, marks today. 

There's this cross drawn on my wrist and Papa keeps tilting me toward it - stay with it, stay here, stay at today. I'm with you here. 

This heart's all jittery. This cross bends with my skin, this makeshift identity - kinda being shifted all cruciform. 
I don't know it yet, but he calls us Beloved.