Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Yes, I've got one. Pain in the right temple, threatening to spread behind the ear and down the neck. Noticeable tension around the rest of my face. I have been walking around all day with my mouth set, my teeth clenched, and my eyes squinting and scowling. Now, nearing bedtime, it feels strange to relax my face and jaw. Letting go of tension feels unnatural. I notice that I'm tired and achy from the effort it takes to present myself to the world and shield myself from its light and noise.

This morning I spilled coffee down the front of my white shirt. The top on the cup leaked and dripped, unknown to me. I looked down and saw a teardrop-shaped stain three inches in diameter.

Makes you want to go home and start over. Or go home and stay.

Instead I kept on with the work in front of me. I changed to a black t-shirt offered by a friend, the church youth director. It had a bible reference on the back--3 John 1:5--in pink letters and said "making the faith visible" and "message remix." I'll get the bible out and look up the verse.

Can't say that I've ever read the 15 verses of 3 John and after having read them, I can't say that I see the point of verse 5. The words on the page are thin and sharp and the effort it took to read them has sent the headache pain into my neck and shoulders.

Bleach may remove the coffee stain from my white v-neck t-shirt. Or it may not. Sleep will cure the headache. A little yoga in the morning may help with the struggle of getting through the day. And I did find something in the 11th verse of 3 John:

"Beloved, do not imitate what is evil but imitate what is good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God."

An imitation, we think, is a bad thing--a knock-off, second-rate, not the genuine article. We pride ourselves on being genuine, on being authentic, on being who we are, not who others want or expect us to be. So what's good about imitating what is good? (I'm starting to sound like Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City.)

Art imitates life. Art creates images. If I am to imitate what is good, I should make images of the good. (Oh, gosh, am I now imitating Plato? Or Aristotle?) I should be a good vocal example to the children in my choir tomorrow, and that means I have to warm-up in a good way tomorrow.

Ultimately, what is good is God, or is from God. Seems simple. But making an image, a living image is complicated, detailed, an experiment.

I'll let you know how tomorrow goes.

1 comment:

Gwen said...

This is a comment from the author. The post ends with "I'll let you know how tomorrow goes." The next morning, September 1, 2006, my husband, Lon Grahnke, died.