simply love

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During my freshman year and half of my sophomore year in college,

I lived on the same dorm floor.

It was the early 80’s and MTV had just started to make it way to our

small town’s cable televisions.

Several of us, who had survived a year together, crammed into a single room

and watched music videos.

We laughed and tried to mimic the dance moves.

It was new and it felt revolutionary.

We all were equally having a blast.

As time began to evaporate, we each realized there were more crucial

activities than trying to define A Flock of Seagulls’ hair  like studying or heading to class.

For no apparent reason, other than perhaps it had been a burning

question since freshman year, the television owner looked me

straight in the eyes and said,

“Hey, what are you? Are you Catholic?”

To be honest, inwardly I smiled.

If you know my story, you might recall that as a child after viewing several

movies about nuns, I wanted to be one.

In my young mind and heart, I could not fathom how to be

closer to God than to be cloistered.

Somehow that hope didn’t mesh with my Presbyterian upbringing.

I didn’t share this tidbit to my friend who was known for her frequent declarations that

as a communication major she was destined to be the next MTV VJ.

Instead, in my quiet voice, I said,

“No, I simply love Jesus.”

I have been thinking a lot about that assertion from 1983.

No truer words.

Lately I have been reading so many debating words on the Christian front.

How have we come to this place in 2014 where we have to label everything as either

good or bad?

Conservative or liberal?

Pro this and anti that?

Millennial this or not?

Young or old?

Some of the descriptors I don’t even understand to be perfectly honest.

My spiritual walk has been shaped by old and new.

I embrace liturgy and praise choruses.

I love opening Bibles crammed with tissue paper as well as listening to it read on my

smart phone (by a voice  sounding like Jeremy Irons, no less).

My heart finds rest in the King James as well as The Message.

Hymns remind me of this vast faith journey of those before me.

Rock concert-like worship can send me to my knees just as much as

singing The Lord’s Prayer.

My heart swells knowing  God delights in all my complicated  ways of finding Him just as

much as He finds pleasure in the one who always wears a tie to church.

He scoots up beside the one who has a bold

ink story applied to her arms.

His ways are old and yet new every single dawn.

His ways are deep and profoundly simple.

His way is the loving way.

The best way I have found.

The collection of books pictured above are ones I grabbed from my shelves, night table

and dare I say, the floor.

They have been teachers in simply loving Jesus.

They are old and they are new.

One day even the new will be old, if it remains against the expanse of years.

Just like in 1975 when I first said yes to Jesus.

Just like in that packed dorm room in 1983 when I defined myself apart from

any denomination.

Just like today in 2014,

My name is Helen and I simply love Jesus.

This reality never gets old.

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2 thoughts on “simply love

  1. ci says:

    Oh how I love this! This is one of those posts that I wish I could have written. I am glad God blessed you with the skill to communicate this wonderful truth. Thanks for sharing with us, precious Helen!

    Like

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