the reliable enemy of good friday

our cat is pretty reliable in this way – if we open a window, soon the cat will appear there on its ledge.  he can also always be found when we open the back door, trying to run out between our feet and prowl these flowering yards.

the other day he caught a bird in flight.  he pierced its neck with his tapered, needle like cat teeth.  we stood around and stared down at its grey feathers puffing up in the wind against the grey sidewalk.  none of us knew what to do.  not even the cat.

today is good friday.

the day we celebrate an innocent man taking the blame for what he didn’t do.  it’s a tough mystery to unravel.  how when we love people to know where is the line of when we speak up for the wrongs done against us and where we just bear it never saying a word.

i tend to lean harder on one side or the other.

either never able to suffer an offense done to me, always defending myself, making sure everyone knows loud and clear, or quietly and passively, how they’ve hurt me.

or i keep it all inside.  folding wrongs done against me like shirts, one on top of another and another, until my heart is nothing but drawers filled with memories that i go right to and pull on when i like.

we are pretty reliable in this way – if a wrong is done to us, we have a way of dealing with it that likely does more harm than good.

the other day a man was caught in the thorny, razor-sharp teeth of his natural enemy and when he was dead, no one knew what to do.  not even the one who had killed him.

is it untrue that people live so much of life just coping from the ways they’ve been hurt?  it sounds bleak and constricted and like a hell of a lot of work.  yet, i’ve got a feeling based on forty-two years of living and nearly every important conversation i have…i’ve got a feeling that it is true.

that man caught in the jaws of his enemy, the bird on the cement, all this end of living can lead us to another way to live.

not with a chest of drawers heart and not having to rake your claws across anyone you think has done you wrong.

there is the good friday way.

we scooped up the innocent bird and walked to the trash can.  children felt responsible and we worried over the taking of the life.  we lifted the black bin lid like rolling back a stone.

then from joshua’s hands we thought the feathers still ruffled from the wind, but no.  it fell from his palm but before it hit the ground it was up, seemingly unwounded and it flew.

we watched it fly and we celebrated how unharmed it was from the wrong done to it.

a promise made of another way to leave this earth.

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