Shrouded

He Took Stock

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Jesus lay his healing stone on a small table he had made. There it was. By his bed. He looked at it.

You can give life to anything you want, he thought. The stone seemed alive.

He took stock.

He was going to be twenty before long, Most of his friends and acquaintances, the men at least, were well-embarked on paths of life. Some doing crafts. Others selling things. Others moving toward Empire and King, seeking to be soldiers or functionaries.

None of these things drew Jesus. He continued to work with his father. Both knew it was a holding pattern.

Jesus would be a late bloomer. He might hardly be born and then no longer alive.

He took stock.

He had never lay with a girl or a woman.

More likely a woman now, he thought. He had no doubt that he would love this way some day. He would never have a conventional marriage or family. If there was love, it would outside the normal avenues.

Jesus was not regarded as highly intelligent. Some who knew him thought he might be unusual. Or mysterious.

Mostly, he was unknown. He survived without difficulty. He seemed unavailable. Almost low key.

Abba.

Jesus took stock.

Could he think of Abba privately? By himself? Of course. He could not care if Abba knew. It would be silly to try to exclude him.

Jesus stretched. He tried to feel himself all at once. He stretched. Nothing popped or went astray. He relaxed.

He wondered what was coming for him. He felt at some kind of end.

He opened his eyes. He saw the stone lying there.

Doing good. Healing. Abba.

Jesus shook his head hard. He breathed hard. He went limp. He focused his mind. Colors on the screen of closed lids. Forms. Details. He did not know what they were.

Jesus wondered if Abba’s mind wandered so. Could Abba stretch?

Jesus tried to picture Abba connected to everything. Was it visible? Where was it?

He took stock.

And then sleep came.