2010 has kept some tricks up its sleeve to lay on the table right before it heads out the door.
In October a single bolt of lightning struck the middle of a quiet New Haven intersection on a sunny day just dozens of feet from me and several others waiting to cross the street. A giant boom and a flash of brilliant white light, like an explosion, and then nothing else at all. No rain, nothing damaged, no further thunder, just car alarms set off all around, while everyone including myself froze in place trying to comprehend, except for one woman who laughed with unbound joy as she skipped down the street.
The next day, on the opposite side of the same block, I ran into a street prophet. He first asked for money to help him get a train to Maryland to see his son for the first time in 21 years. When I had none to offer, he hit on me. When that didn't work, he began telling me about Jesus, and told me to ask him any question I had about God. I thought hard, and then told him earnestly that though I have many questions about the world and about myself, I have no questions about God. He hesitated, and then for the first time in his lengthy monologue asked permission to tell me something, and I agreed. What followed was spoken in a different voice and tone, and something I can only consider to be a prophecy for my future, a good one, that I am keeping close at hand.
I've wondered since then about my having no questions about God. I didn't notice that before. I believe in God and I think about God and religion and spirituality a lot of the time. I ponder how I can best live my life in tune with God. I wonder why people care so much about the details of different religions that appear to them to be in conflict. But about God, himself, herself, itself, whatever- I don't wonder or worry, or try to understand with logical thinking. Should I be relieved about that, or does it mean I'm lazy or missing something if I don't have questions?
I contemplate this as I continue a long hermit interlude, slowly piecing my kitchen back together with all the details carefully considered. It is an overdue home improvement, but it's deeper then just that. With my new wheat allergy the need to learn how to cook has bullied itself into being a priority in my daily existence. Resistant to this at first as a life-long hater of cooking, putting so much love into the kitchen through my language of paint is changing my feelings about feeding myself for the better. And as I go, I learn even more about kitchens and food, and how they are so closely linked to God.
Photo above, the kitchen with its newly recovered wood floor, once under brown linoleum. Below, the floor before deep sanding and polyurethane.