Giving Until it Hurts

The mosh pit went still when Trent began to play the opening chords. The lights went dark. It was in the days before cell phones everywhere. We were young. Post-Kurt, pre-9/11. The future. Decked out in flannel.

A still mosh pit is rarely good.

This was good.

Voices flowed together. Hands joined. Hurt was released. I cried. No one laughed.

Don’t look for it now. You won’t find it. Some things are just gone.

But if you listen real close to Johnny, you might just feel it. Like a whispering breeze on a sweltering day. Fleeting. Almost torturous, but a blessing all the same.

Even then, I was preparing myself for religion.


I almost forget what I thought pastoring would be like when I decided to attend seminary. Clerics tried to tell me. War stories. Confessions. Scars I couldn’t see because I had not been initiated into the club were offered for viewing.

Blindness can sometimes be unwillingly willful.

My scars were a different color at the time. A different shape. Born on the inside.



I sometimes think it was a mistake. Parts of my life simply don’t belong to me any more. I feel tethered. Controlled. Watched. Monitored.


People having conversations about my livelihood. Talking about what I’m allowed to do.

I guess I found my price. It is a lot lower than I thought it might be. It doesn’t facilitate end meeting end.

Pastors aren’t supposed to talk about things like this, it might reflect badly on…

If then answer is the pastor, I have no sense of self.


It is bigger than me. Don’t ask me what. The answer is too complicated to fit in a three letter word.

Grind Out Disappointment.


I’m told it is not about me. But can it be, sometimes? Please?

I’ll show you mine if you show me yours.

But let’s go slow. I’m feeling a little uncertain.

I hope that’s okay.

I really need that to be okay.



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