I’m not really a feeling sharer. Well, sometimes I do, but I end up exhausted and frustrated that I 1) shared too much and now that person with whom I shared won’t be able to sleep tonight, 2) I didn’t share it right, so now they have a skewed perspective of my very complex feelings, and 3) I probably don’t have a solution just from talking to them about it. Not saying that getting advice isn’t good, but sometimes it doesn’t work too well. There are few moments where I can express my heart coherently to another person – at least in a reasonable amount of time.
I’m a bottler. And an eater. Really, I eat my feelings.
Like when I got home from school today, checked the mailbox for the mail (one of my favorite afternoon activities) and found that my mom had already gotten it. Right about then, I wanted to eat a donut and wash it down with caramel apple cider.
Then I got inside, saw two huge envelopes sitting on the staircase and realized that my long-awaited (okay, so it’s been like 3 weeks) acceptance letter was sitting right before my lil blue eyes.
The donut and apple cider still sounded good, but since we don’t have a full-service kitchen with a self-restocking pantry, I had to settle for the cider. Soon afterwards, I was feeling like procrastination of my homework was a good idea, plus I was craving salt. There was leftover guacamole in the fridge, but no chips – what do we do when we’re out of food? We go to Cub. This is a 3-time-a-week occurrence, at minimum.
I was going to recount everything I’ve eaten since I got home from school, but suddenly (as I’m listing the things off in my head) that doesn’t sound like such a good idea anymore. I’m starting to feel the weight of the things I’ve eaten, and now I wish I had gone for a run instead. That actually sounds appealing right now. (you know something’s wrong when going for a run at 8:00 – when it’s pitch-black outside and rather chilly – sounds like a good idea.)
Speaking of throwing off weight: At a youth event I attended yesterday, the speaker recounted a story about throwing cats that really stuck with me. Not just because I don’t particularly like cats, but because of what the cat represents and because he was a very gifted storyteller. (I’m told that I don’t possess the storyteller gene, so I envy this guy.)
So this guy went to Turkey on a trip to study the Bible. Apparently there are stray cats all over Turkey, and when he arrived he was told that under no circumstances was he to pet the cats. Long story short, he did the unthinkable one day and pet a cat. The cat proceeded to purr and look very happy… then it jumped up into his lap. (stray cat. diseased most likely. yucky. taboo.) By this point he wasn’t too comfortable with having a cat – that he wasn’t supposed to even touch – sitting on his lap, but before he knew what had happened, the cat had leaped up onto his HEAD and started trying to eat his ear. The guy freaked out and ended up flinging the cat down fifteen rows of the outdoor amphitheater where he was listening to a lecture about Ancient Ephesus, right past the lecturer.
It’s like the sin in our lives. When we first encounter it, it looks harmless enough – actually, less than harmless; sometimes it looks beneficial! – but soon after we give in to those temptations, they ensconce themselves in our laps and eventually wrap themselves around our heads, eating away at the things in our lives that are valuable to us: our morals, relationships, priorities, our connection to Jesus.
It reminded me of Romans 6:6-7
6We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. 7For one who has died has been set free from sin.
We’ve all got cats to get off of our heads.
I’m so glad that speaker told a bizarre story about cats, because now I might actually retain the essence of his message.