Posts Tagged ‘God’

February 14, 2009

009

 

All things are marked by time. I remember years ago when I first came out to these sand hills-that would have been in 1970….we would have driven right past this pasture. Then it would have been loaded with hogs,now it has goats-I have never known it to be free from being under the hoof.

I first came out to these sand hills to meet a character named Arnie. Arnie was retired Army-from Boston,with a permanent accent. He lived out here in a shack-a literal shack. His job  was to over see several thousand acres of roaming pigs. They did all the work.

During the hippie days of the 1970’s there was an old black fellow that lived in Gainesville. Johnny was his name. He was a wino who owned a guitar and harmonica and used them all to make some of the greatest free style blues you ever heard. If you had a party but did not have a stereo you’d ride around and hunt Johnny and always had music. Somehow Johnny knew Arnie and everyone knew Johnnie and we all drove out to the sand hills to sit around Arnie’s lamp and get drunk and sit back and listen to Johnny.

I never knew in my wildest dreams that I’d be living in the same spot where Arnie kept a lawn chair and a  black and white TV set and his old lamp – covered in plastic to protect it from the rain. I remember what it was like the first time coming out here. It was foggy and in the wee hours of the morning. All of us packed in a station wagon and most of us drunk or buzzed in some such fashion. I remember there were some girls with us who sighed in relief when they saw the glow of Arnie’s TV in the dark and then kept remarking in disbelief that he was tucked back so deep in the woods and that there was actually an Arnie.. Then in those days the road there was hardly a trail. Taking someone down the road on a first trip at night always seemed to draw a sense of reservation on the initiates part. Arnie’s TV offering that grayish haze in the trees was almost as if a shrine was glowing through the forest.

The pasture in this picture once held Black Angus cows. The things were so dark you could never see them at night. I remember once upon a time when I had to walk out of these woods to go to work. I had to leave usually about 0300 in order to make the traffic light 7 miles away by 0530. From there I hitch hiked to work. To make a short cut-I could walk the road adjacent to the pasture and cut through the woods to Baptism Pond and come out on the highway. It cut my walk at least a third.

In the pitch black of the sleeping morning I’d get the attention of the herd of Black Angus and they’d follow my scent in the dark. I couldn’t see them-I’m not sure if they could see me,but I know they sensed something. The sound of them running up towards the fence coming out of the quiet and the darkness is an eire sound which causes that spooky feeling you had as a kid to return.

I remember the walk being so quiet that one length paralled the power line and I could hear the electric zinging through the wires.

I don’t walk the distance into Archer any more. I should-there is no need,but I still should. I do walk up the length past the pasture-but where I used to cut through and make my short cut is where I turn around. The round trip from my front door and back is 3 miles.

I like to see the span of time I’ve known this trail. From hundreds of free roaming pigs to Black Angus to now-with goats. Goats make this sound that is similar to someone calling my name. I can imagine that would have really spooked me if they occupied the pasture back in those days long gone. Even in daylight I usually feel funny hearing the sound as if someone is yelling out my name-and every time feel the fool when I turn and see it is just those goats yelling at each other. I can just imagine what it would have done at night-my jeans and boots would be running faster than me!

I have to thank God everytime I walk down this road. I thank God for giving me the years offered that I’ve come down this lane,over 39.

I still walk it-as I have said,and use the time to fellowship with God and talk about the many things that muck up life. The meditation the peace of it provides-the health of it,the fresh air and the briskness of pace pushing the blood around my body. I have the chance many times over to thank God for how my prayers were answered-prayers spoken from my heart as I walked out of these woods everyday. I asked that my sons would be spared that the way my life had been would not be the way theirs would go-the only thing I’ve ever asked for..

My prayers have been answered.

humbled…

March 29, 2008


wierd crucifiction drawing

Originally uploaded by jayfherron

A very good friend who has known my circumstances for a while took her time to telephone around the area to locate a source for ‘meals on wheels’…for me.
She apparently called several churches in the area-one such church,she said,was ready and waiting for me…all I had to do was go in and show them my drivers license.

I was not too sure I was going to. My last experience (and I mean-my LAST experience) ended almost four years ago. I was ‘shunned’ because of my beliefs-and because I did not and will not vote.
The men of the church all sought to get George W. elected-something about he was going to stamp out abortion…instead he sends grown people to be aborted by bullets,but that’s another story!

My friend explained this church would help me with most anything-bills,or what ever may be binding me down.

I am a person of faith. I trust it and know when each time comes which faith works its thing that I am well with God. It always works.
But this friend went to a lot of effort to telephone around…and,I was hungry- so,I went.
The church was huge (actually,once upon a time-I helped build one of the buildings there-the main sanctuary) and it took me a few minutes to walk around it and do my regular hypnotic conditioning so I could get the personality needed to enter.
The door was locked-but they buzzed me in…one of those New York City style door buzzers that unlock the door from a remote spot.
I entered and was greeted and explained my self….that right after I answered the question…”how are you today”?
I replied-“I am humbled”.
“What can we do for you”?
…..”Wellll,a friend has told me that you are expecting me to pick up some food”!
Heads scratched….looks of confusion-and question.
“Maybe I’m in the wrong church”!! I was not sure.
“No no….we have food-we are a church”! “We just need you to fill out this application and give us a copy of your drivers license”.

I sat down and had the clip board and pen filling out the form. The form had a spot which said-needs other than food (or some such) and I thought about my water well-the pump is now going 24/7 and has raised my electric from the usual; 35 bills a month up to 175 or 185…and its killing me-and I can’t even afford the 21 dollar part to fix that. You see-once my ‘social security’ check comes and I pay these bills….zip to zero dollars to carry on the rest of the month. Living check to check….well,these being monthly checks-it makes for a long month.

It is humbling to have had once upon a time bring to the bank a 700 dollar to a 1000 dollar a week pay check. Now it’s not quite that-after bills I am left with about 20 dollars for the month….and then-faith!
I felt humbled standing there-begging.
Of course…there was an interview-and the question about my church attendance,do I go to church somewhere? Nope…notta chance any more-not when I was once there to learn about God and get shunned because that particular church had a facsimile of ‘religion’….and yet could merely only trust a man….George W.Bush.
I expressed this to the pastor that was interviewing me…told hm some things how the former church had said that God ordained the US Constitution. My argument was-if God wrote the Constitution then why does he teach in the Bible about being a drunk-and how sinful it is….and then go on ahead and place in the Constitution a protection of liquor sales from state to state??
I could never get an answer…the former pastor had none-ehh,well…he had some comment that the Constitution I was reading was written by a liberal magazine (duh???) because the copy I used to show him that was in a ‘Readers Digest’….so I told him to go home and read his own copy-that never happened,he said he knew what the Constitution said.
Then I asked the former preacher to prove to me God ordained the United States Constitution.
Romans 13:1 was his sole answer-over and over. Nothing else.

I do admit-I felt comfortable with the man who interviewed me…but the thought of entering a building each Sunday with a troop of persons….well,it scares me! To get caught back up in it-scares me. To trust a church-and then have it disillusioned by the things of the world-politics,for example….scares me.
But there I was-swallowing spit to pretend I was not hungry. Humbled.

I walked away with two bags of grocery stuff-two packs of burger meat ,and a variety of canned goods and soups and cereals and some soaps and deodorant…I felt,well-humbled,and thankful.

I got them home and divided the packages into a new separate package and took half the groceries to an elderly man I know. His social security check is much smaller than mine.
I love the little old man. He is simple-and poor…and if any one in life is my brother with God,it is him.
Luke 4:18

it’s better than you think!

March 26, 2008

the only traffic light in town
Originally uploaded by jayfherron

I spoke to the funeral director last night-his last words to me as we began to hang up were “…I’m so sorry !!”-which immediately prompted me to return with “….don’t be sorry for me-I’m one of the luckiest people there is because I know!” “Great Glory…I know!!”
Of course,officially-medically,I do not know…not officially,but-the signs are popping up.
And by ‘knowing’?
I know this is not my home and proper territory. And I know there is a God.

I am a suicidal person. I could own the Brooklyn Bridge by now if the thousands of times I wanted to end my life were worth money. But , because of my belief in God , it also my belief that taking my life is not my property-after all,to trust there’s peace after death is to trust there is something better. In my impression-it is a life with God.
I do believe that in final days if one is able one can,but only then.

I can start in a million places to say why I hate this life,most all of them return to barracks D and my life’s abrupt change there,yet I can also see my baby brother Carl bleeding in our fathers arms,only a few weeks short of being six years old.

I haven’t written much that I dealt with these experiences of death in my life by becoming a mortician,once upon a time. I remembered as a boy seeing Mr.Hoke shoot himself-the wound in his head was huge,and yet at the funeral home he was as perfect as ever,except dead.
Like with my sister-they had to bring a stool over casket side so I could see him. So I was pretty close. Just like with my sister. She had only died a year or so before. I wasn’t much more than six. Mr.Hoke and Jo Eileen were laid in repose in the same funeral parlor in the same spot. My sister was only 11 when she died.
Most kids in school day dreamed about lives as firemen or cops-I always thought of how they did that to ‘Hoke’,how they fixed him like that? (It was my real wish to be an architect-but my curiosity was towards mortuary science).
It was the same with Carl. Yet,it was also the men at Huntemann’s who were so attentive to all of us. It couldn’t help but have a lasting impression.

To go through from being a boy who sees his sister in a casket-young enough not to really understand,but old enough when seeing Hoke shoot himself and laid out in the same place I last saw my sister…and then see Carl dying in our fathers arms-only to have it waxed off with barracks D. Its no wonder I’m fucked up…and want out of here.

Well,why should believe in God then? Why would God do these things-to children…and awful things?
Hey-look…I don’t know. Good grief-if it was a God that put the stars in place and made the heavens tempting….then how am I,a guy who can hardly bend a nail straight know the answers to that.
I don’t even know the answers to why some people are effected by certain tragic parts of their lives and go on as if nothing ever happened. And yet-others,some worse than me,can’t get through the day. I don’t know these things.
I do know there was once an experience that I went through which made it solid as a rock in my heart-there is a God…and a real life.

I sat in a church for almost six years-faithfully attending-full of wanting to learn about God.
They kept talking more about Paul…and soon it became obvious the only way to find for real what the truth was I began to read the Bible. And I read it and read it again. I read it parallel to the Quran…and darned if there ain’t comparisons…the Torah,there too.
I think about the whole concept of the Garden…and Adam and Eve.And trust.
The story can work and has some bearing on how I believe it’s going to work!
What a beautiful wondrous thing it must have been to be a garden with the perfect mate-naked…no kids,no cell phones…no nothing but one and the other-alone,and forever.
And then add love to that. Two alone,naked…and in love-great great love. Love in a garden-a garden so large you can never go from it.
Do I believe when I go to this garden my Dad and my sister and my brother or my grandparents or the neighbors-like Hoke…are all going to be there to greet me?
No!
If it is such-then why?
Why would we want to spoil the one assortment of things we all so desire in all of our lives? Love…
So no-there’s no more of them,our family and relatives and those that came forward in the church all those Sundays to give it up for the Lord.
Just you and this one you’ve wanted all through this life-God aka Love.

I’ve heard it taught about the bride of Christ-the new Adam and the new Eve.
Like I said-there is no way I can ever properly explain that which God has done.
In Revelations-one of the first few verses of chapter 21…it talks about the city coming out of the sky adorned as a bride.
Could it be we find this true love with God-and Gods immensity and power and light is too far greater to comprehend and allows us to never remember this pathetic sorry place we call life.

It’s like a TV set in my head. The channels are few-I can click them with ease. Its like waking up each morning and the first moment my mind takes in the daylight it begins the inventory-always starting with barracks D and working backwards. I can rewind as on a VCR and replay the ugly moments with out the strength to turn them off forever.
It is countless simple things during each day that automatically switch on the events-things others might take for granted like entering a store….with me it revives the need to protect myself and gear my mind to grab the things I need and go. I never feel comfortable just standing there and looking at the items. I grab and go.
Its worse if I’m in a place where I have to pee.
Simple little ‘nothings’ that make my life miserable-because of life’s trials and having to live in places like barracks D.

No Mr. Funeral Director-you need to smile!
This cool cat is happy as if he’s packing for a trip to some great land. I will get to return to that beautiful sound of the voices singing and that beautiful light that I got a short peek at some years back…whatever the answer is will soon be mine to cherish-gladly I’m not trying to second guess God,but I greatly believe the idea being the ‘bride’ might be conceivable.
On my tombstone it says ‘hast thou not known,hast thou not heard-that the everlasting God,the Lord,the Creator of the ends of the earth,fainteth not,neither is weary?
There is no searching Gods understanding.
God gives power to the faint;and to them that have no might God increases strength.
Youth shall faint and the young shall utterly fall.
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary,and they shall walk and not be faint.

I really believe this.