The Appearance of Self

There sat a lot overgrown with weeds. Within the brush were rusted homes on cinder blocks.  Broken windows were patched together with duct tape.  A smell of cat pee permeated the air and assaulted noses of intruders. A resounding gun shot punctured the air.  A few streets down a broken pickup truck splattered glass as the bullet burst into the windshield.  No one was killed.  It was an abandoned truck and country kids were simply practicing for the upcoming deer season.  In a town like this, that’s what teenagers without a dime do to pass the time.  That, or chase a sparkling dream too vast and complicated for them to understand.

Forks, WA.

I’ve been thinking about our trip this past February out to Seattle.  While visiting Washington, we drove to the Hoh Rainforest and happened upon the novel inspiration that was Forks.  There were no fanged beasts, except the one devouring any resemblance of stability and financial security.  It was a town in the middle of nowhere.  Here were folks removed from the bustle of Seattle.  Their homes were dilapidated and caving.  

Seattle was, on the other hand, shiny.  Steel buildings climbed into the heavens.  Individuals were sipping mochaccinos at Starbucks, a franchise monopolizing every corner.  In front of them would be a keyboard or phone.  A friend might be sitting right across but with their handheld device in tow as well.  

Forks appeared broken, decayed.  Seattle seemed fresh, new.  

We can be broken but plastered in casts of smiles.  We can be bruised but persevering in joy.  Our circumstances don’t determine our countenance.  People can project their perceptions all they want.  God looks at the motivations of the heart.  God sees our sorrows and thrills.  He can see the hidden emotions and the ones broadcasted on sleeves.  Yet through it all, let us open ourselves to his grace and his mercy.  So as we open up to vulnerability we will grow in honest expression and in Christ-like appearance.  


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