Life is a whole. The individual parts of “you” pull together into a great big wad of wiggly coolness.
I’ve said before that if you profess to believe something in one part of your life you should be exhibiting that in every other part of your life. That’s called a consistent worldview but the problem is that life is big. Really big. From work, to play, to church… tying those things together can be hard. In order to do it, I have to know who, or what, I am.
I am friends. Hanging out late at night around a fire under a billion stars.
I am moonshine in a jar passed to friends as we talk about God; all sipping from the same jar. Not getting drunk as much as enjoying the gifts that He has granted us. I am community.
I am early mornings with the sun rising through the trees; the dew thick and wet on the grass.
I am country music cranked all the way to MAX VOL in a truck speeding down a two lane road with all of the windows down; the smell of wild wisteria and dog wood trees surrounding me.
I am Jesus working in this world. I am following Him and proclaiming it loudly. I am the charity of Gods hand.
I am the most beautiful woman in the world. Clinging to my husband with respect, love and devotion. She is the standard by which I measure other women. I am a husband loving my wife as myself and trying to lead with care.
I am failure; I am success.
I am Rock and Roll playing from someone’s cell phone in a tinny rendition of a song that we heard together at a Black Crows concert twenty years ago.
I am a truck; Hub deep in mud. Laughing and bragging with friends as we work to pull each other out of mud holes that normal people would avoid or parked under the trees ten miles from pavement with the tailgate down and fried chicken spread across it for lunch.
I am a boat. Cooler stacked full. Lines in the water. Not catching… just fishing. I am a boat running at half speed with an inner tube full of kids splashing along behind it. I am a jetski streaking across the water at fifty miles an hour with screaming teenagers holding on for all they’re worth.
I am Sunday morning. Listening to the pastor as I hold my wife’s hand. I am hymns sung by those like me who can’t sing. I am prayer; reverent, whole, complete.
I am a ballcap turned backwards.
I am a middle of the night run to rescue your truck and girlfriend off the side of the road. I am bailing you out of jail for your idiocy.
I am red plastic cups rattling with ice and sweet tea on a patio covered with friends.
I am a child playing quietly in the dirt or running, screaming, through the trees. I am the image of God in this world.
I am computer code written at 2AM through a haze of cigarette smoke and caffeine.
I am a garden planted in the spring and slowly, slowly creating food for my family. I am a man, praying fervently for the weather that will make my garden grow.
I am bills stacked high and falling off of the desk. I am figuring out what to pay and when. I am making sure that God gets his share and I am making sure that the folks down the road have clothes to wear and food to eat.
I am fixing a widows roof and holding an orphans hand.
I am a pretty good right hook.
I am a computer processing millions of transactions per second buried in a room with thousands of others just like it. Wall to wall and stacked to the ceiling. Lights blinking in the carefully conditioned air.
I am a bank that cares about America, taking a beating from the greedy as I continue, every day, to do the right thing.
I am poor grammar and country contractions. I am strange enunciation and beautiful drawls.
I am rain on a New York City street. I am someone slipping a twenty to a homeless guy along with a prayer for a dry place for him to sleep.
I am friend to the waiter, the cashier, the CTO, the preacher and the sinner.
I am a hunter deep in the woods with my brothers and friends.
I am the tickle monster.
I am jeans and boots stained and broken from work. I am scarred knuckles and scratched arms and broken ankles.
I am suits and ties.
I am a tractor crawling across a field throwing up dust into the hot summer air.
I am dropping everything to help a friend in need.
I am the smell of a church late at night in the middle of the week after most have left.
I am a strong handshake and a gentle caress.
I am “In God We Trust”.
I am a shotgun wielded with skill and care as I turn skeet into dust. I am friends joking, taunting, teasing, challenging, celebrating.
I am a dirt road that goes nowhere and everywhere I want to be.
I am a small town and a massive city.
I am breakfast at Waffle House.
I am a kid, sitting with mama on the porch, shelling peas through a long evening as she tells me stories; her fingers stained purple from the hulls.
I am a warrior. Scarred and healed by the same memories.
I am honor, and faith, and ethics.
I am a flag that doesn’t run.
I am hate and fear.
I am the morning sun filtered through stained glass windows.
I am a writer but not very good at it.
I am all of these things and more rolled up and squished together in a gooey ugly mess. These are the things that I do and the things that I believe but they are also, at almost every level, who I am. It’s probably a lot like who you are.
Tying all of those things together into a consistent story
isn’t ain’t easy.