October 13 — Seven days of heroin / The light behind the firs

I.

I suppose this is a fitting post for Friday the 13th. I’ve spent a large portion of the afternoon reading an extensive story in the Cincinnati Enquirer covering a week of abuses, overdoses, and death at the hands of heroin.

I want to refuse to look, to turn on happy indie pop music and dance away the Friday afternoon, glorying in the sunshine and my youth and my health and my beautiful wife. But to do that, as Dan Allender reminded me earlier this week, would be an act of hatred against hope. I can’t take on all the burdens of the world, of course, but neither can I refuse to enter into the world’s pain and injustice and death. If there is any hope to be had, it must be able to speak the truth about our depraved and dying condition. It must be big enough to encompass — somehow, though I don’t know exactly how — the recent week of 180 overdoses and 18 deaths in the greater Cincinnati area. It must be able to bear the weight of that, week in and week out, along with the car accidents and children with cancer and mutliple holocausts of the 21st century and all the plague and storms and famins and wars that have crushed people from every culture and every faith and in every part of the world.

Maranatha. Come, Lord! Please come soon.

II.

The silhouette of evergreen trees in the yellow light above the horizon just after sunset captivates me. I’ve been searching for something familiar here in Edmonds. I’ve been searching for something like the pier — a place I can go, a view I can find and enjoy nearly ever day — to ground me. I need everyday beauties to savor and thank God for. Or rather I need to have my eyes opened to see them. They’re there, always, sometimes glimmering faintly, other times too big and bold to not notice. Today I have found that dusk will be one of them — the sight of Douglas fir trees inky black against the dying yellow western sky.

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