Ever been steaming mad? I have. Ever been steaming mad at God? Me too! I’ve been so hot and steaming mad that I’ve screamed till my throat was raw. I’ve screamed inside my car. I’ve screamed while I’ve walked our 44 acres of trails. I’ve steamed, alright. And I’ve found that steaming screaming is purging. And purging is healing because it’s real. Not that screaming is always appropriate. It’s not. But when time and place allows and heart pounds hard and you’ve just got to get it out–I find a safe place and a safe person who will hear and hold.
God is real. And God WANTS real. He doesn’t want religious. He wants REAL! God wants us honest, no matter where we find ourselves. If we’re honestly tired and worn out and hurting and fed up—He wants us like that. When we’re raw and real—He wants us like that. When we’re afraid we are just . . . too . . . much . . . for God to love? He wants us like that! And when I’m steaming mad? He wants me. Even like that, He wants me! Imagine that!
How do I know? Because God is greater than anything or anyone I’ve ever experienced as good on this earth. God is greater. And I’ve experienced a human love that loves me even in my ugly.
My husband, he loves me. He loves me in my ugliest. And I’m not talking about my face without make-up or my body dressed in sweats. I’m talking about soul-ugly. I’m talking about deep-down, downright disgusting ugly that I wouldn’t dare show another human being for fear of rejection. But my husband? Don’t be fooled.
My husband is no saint. I’ve seen his deep-down ugly. I’ve seen his steaming mad. I’ve heard the thunderclaps coming from his depths. But I know his deep-down soul. I know how hard he tries. I know how much he loves. I know how committed he is to becoming all God envisions him to be. And love—true love—covers a multitude of sins. God says so. And God knows our hearts. And I know my husband’s heart. It’s good. Perfect? No. Deep down good? Yes. And he knows the same about me.
There’s something healing about experiencing a full-accepting love here on earth. Though not God, it’s the closest we get to God here in the imperfect. And I can say, without reservation, that the love of my husband has been the most healing touch of God I’ve ever experienced. Because my husband knows that my steaming mad means I’m shaking scared. And when I’m shaking scared, he just holds me. He just holds me tight and tells me he’s not going anywhere. When I’m steaming mad, he knows I need a love that overcomes—a love that overshadows fear.
When hot meets cool, it steams. And steam can be strangely beautiful—when you try to understand. When you step back and don’t take things personally. When you glance at the total landscape and witness the beauty of a simple reaction. Steam CAN be beautiful. And it’s fleeting. When the Son comes out and warms relationship, steam evaporates. Ground warms and readies for seed. Ground grows. Ground feeds. Ground gives life. Cold and ripped up and flooded—warmed and dried—ground is readied. It’s readied for life. True life. Not some fake-smile, pretend-all-is-nice life. Real life. Down and dirty, mad and scared, sad and glad true life.
Anyone out there know what I’m talking about? Anyone out there sick and tired of the fake? Tired of faking it?
Shall we get real and realize we’re all not nearly as good as we pretend? Shall we show some of our steam to a few trusted souls and let them show us their steam in return? Shall we pray for one another instead of judge one another? Shall we recognize our own planks when we see so well the specks of the one right in front or our own eyes? Can the steam we see be used to cleanse and heal rather than scorch and scar?
I say yes. Yes, I will hold your steam and, with God’s help, I’ll do so with grace. The sad. The mad. The scared. Will you hold mine? Will we walk together and help each other steam real and really find true life with each other and God?