Monday, November 10, 2008

Attracted to the ugly

I had one of those divine appointments this morning.
I hadn't even made set foot into my office when I was asked to talk.

I let out a sigh and said I could meet her right then and there. I felt somewhat annoyed, aggravated that my hands were still full and already skeptical of this Monday morning.

She took a seat on the blue sofa and I closed the door to the conference room. This woman is a non-traditional student in her late thirties, a mom and wife.

What could she possibly want to talk to me about? I mused.

She said "Elizabeth, people think I'm crazy when I tell them this, but I'm attracted to the ugly."
Pain beckons her in. Suffering reaches out to her. She wants to step in.

Ahhhh, my heart softened.

"Elizabeth," she said, "the puzzle pieces of my life fit together during chapel on Friday. When John Childers shared about the "Voice for the Voiceless" I was so moved. God is calling me to respond."

I leaned forward, recognizing the divinity of this conversation, and prompted her to continue.

"What do I do with this, now?" she asked.

A grin slowly spread across my face.

Imagine the excitement in my voice: "I have books! And magazines! And websites!"
I told her about my list of alternative gift ideas, authors like Henri Nouwen and Jean Vanier, publications like "The Cry" through Word Made Flesh.

I understand her antsy feeling.
I understand how to find beauty in suffering and brokenness.

I know what it means to find ugliness attractive.

She's not crazy.

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