Profound points are hard to come by. They are evasive, elusive, yet entirely pervasive. They are everywhere, but it’s hard to see them.
For example: Tonight, after a 2-hour dinner process of grilling and serving and chopping and eating (in other words, a level of exertion that my wife manages almost 24 hours a day), I lay down across the couch completely exhausted, while the tribe that occupies the small space of our home milled about with their various tasks and activities. Randomly, small bodies would appear without warning and climb on me and scream in the general vicinity of my ear-drums.
At one moment, Meghan, the nearly 2-year-old queen of our domain, gave me a sudden and surprisingly powerful headbutt. (That’s a funny word, “headbutt,” isn’t it?) It hurt! Really! I yelled, “Owww,” at the shock of the violence and turned to face my attacker with a scowl and a bark, but . . . there was that little, cherubic, bright-eyed, worried little face, only inches from mine, showing the weight of the world and afraid her father was about to chew her face off.
Well, she caught me in rare, gracious moment. I swallowed the bark and realized in that half-second look into her eyes that she was only trying to climb into my lap and the pain was all mine. Nonetheless, I fumed, wishing to share my pain and protest the assault on my weary head. I just closed my eyes and turned away, surprisingly able to hold my tongue.
Next thing I knew, it was after eleven o’clock, and the house was quiet, except for the TV in our bedroom ranting for the unconscious. All of the little hobbits were snoring innocently in their beds. They’re all good when they’re sleeping!Where’s the profundity in that experience, you ask? Exactly my point. It’s elusive, yet pervasive. Before writing this, I sat here for twenty minutes bouncing from thought to thought, rewinding the tape fo my day and pulling out pieces of my heart to examine for anything worthy, or suitable, for journal fodder. I’m looking for something that even I would care to read about, something funny, yet deep; unoffensive to friends, yet confrontational; challenging, yet inviting; i.e. something profound. (At this point, you’re likely assuming I failed, right? Maybe.)
I realized that I scanned the items under the “Religion” heading here at wordpress.com today for something like that and was mostly disappointed. In fact, after scrolling through blog blurbs for about 45 minutes, I was pretty certain that I would never want to write a blog – not if I might be perceived by others in the way I was viewing my fellow bloggers. The volume of “stuff” humans produce is truly incredible. This is definitely a self-accusation, as well, but most of it is entirely unworthy for human consumption. Pardon me, but it’s like that stuff that comes out of a zit – significant to the producer, but a bit repulsive to everyone but the most loving admirers, and they’re probably faking it.
So, here I am, popping mine for you. What’s the point worth making or reading about here? Why do I bother writing, after all of that? Here:
Sometimes, all of us are like a little girl just trying to crawl into her father’s arms and inflicting an unexpected and painful headbutt in the process. We inflict pain when we’re looking for comfort and those we hurt tend to turn on us in their own defense, compounding the problem. We mean well, but relationships are hard and perception is everything, and if the offender doesn’t have a cherubic face with big brown eyes and hair spun by angels, chances are the reaction solicited hastily will not be gracious.
Sometimes, we’re the ones on the receiving end of the headbutt, and the source can be someone who needs us, or someone we need. Sometimes, truth comes knocking on our heads in an effort to get to our hearts.
Truth is hard to see, and even harder to swallow. It is seldom pain-free, and generally offensive. Truth is best served in the context of love. This is why it’s so comforting to know that truth has a personality; truth is a person: Jesus. He is love and truth.
And when he gives us a headbutt, we should be careful how we respond.