blame it on the huehuetenango
i hold in my hands a tiny cup of single origin espresso from the mysterious land of huehuetenango ( … yes it is fair trade ) the first sip BOOM the smoky flavor reminds me of something ... they say the fires burn there with a heatless flame that never dies, bathing you in pain but never consuming. they say this is reserved for those not under the blood who don't acknowledge the lordship. they tell me that i need to understand, that god has a reputation to protect and can't be seen in my company him being perfect, and me not they tell me not to worry god has donned human flesh, like a hazmat suit. walking bravely into the contaminated area to bring us good news. they say my remaining time can't be predicted, it could be decades or microseconds they tell me i need to make sure, before that final surprise package, to save myself by accepting the free offer of salvation. they tell me once i die and finally see jesus as who he really is full of glory and love and wisdom without the witness of the crusades the inquisition the catholic pedophiles the protestant slavers or the nondenominational spectacularly coiffed televangelists to cloud my vision. when i finally see jesus as he really is, it will be too late. like trying to place bets on a horse race after it's over. before this once in a lifetime offer expires, before the last grain of carefully measured grace falls in the hourglass, before the winged monkeys come to bear me away to the castle of fire, they tell me i need to declare that jesus is the lord of my life they even drew for me a diagram which represents my life to show how pretty it would be if i put the cross, right in the middle like a child matching up the red cube with the red square shaped hole i will win the prize i will be saved and ooooooh lordy the polyester hell you end up in after that salvation with the unquenchable flames of smiling people who are "fine" every sunday and want to know how your "walk with the lord" is doing as if it were a third person in the room whose name nobody can remember but is also "fine" sip the crappy perked coffee what's for lunch? how happy you will be to sing on that morning of god's glory and the beauty of the far heavens where the lord sits waiting for you to die so that all the ugly repulsive parts of you, that you are learning to hate as much as he does, will finally be gone and you will at last be fit to be seen in the presence i need to pray more i need to read my bible more regularly i need to hate the sin and love the sinner i need to take detailed notes when listening to sermons i need to memorize more scriptures, including the gps coordinates of key passages i need to get to work, be part of the family business i need to see the angels helping me cross the street safely i need to avoid listening to the false teachers i need to hold fast to the teachings of the apostles i need to be ready to give answers about the hope within me i need to understand the deep significance of the hebrew word for "know" and the subtle distinctions between the five greek words for "love" i need to let go and let god i need to shine the light of jesus in a dark and desperate world i need to inventory my spiritual gifts i need to discern my calling i need to find an accountability partner i need to keep piling more of this on, as i gain the strength, growing in maturity, ever vigilant ever striving to not be like the hypocrites, the pharisees that jesus yelled at who had a list detailing exactly what god required of them but couldn't see him when he was right in front of them inviting them to sit and eat and drink. invited to a feast, i wonder if i am even brave enough to take a second sip.