Some preachers don’t mess with me. They’re nice enough to be ticklish, and don’t stomp through the tulips. Not my preacher. He stomps hopin to catch some critters who want to eat the tulips. This was one day he was stompin and messin and I almost ran outa church with wet mascara.
It was the parable about the sinner in church who was repentin, and the Faira See so happy he wasn’t that sinner ‘cause he’s all perfect. Lookin at that sinner cryin and carryin on that day, he was boastin to God about how lucky he was to be a righteous man.
I thought to myself, how disgustin, didn’t he know God says we ALL sin and fall short? How stupid bein an church man and all, and he didn’t even know God seen his heart.
Then I saw it. In 3-D livin color a flashback of my cousin Connie’s funeral. Connie the Con I used to call her. Cause she’d lie to the Pope and steal from a baby. Connie was a mess. My cousin Connie, only born a few months after me, so we were always bein compared by people.
I loved that, ‘cause she was a mess and I was the good girl. She was a rebel, and I said “yes ma’m and no sir” with a polite enough smile to make them think I was happy to do whatever.
Connie didn’t care about school, even though she wasn’t dumb, and I cared. I got good grades in all subjects, and my parents gleamed at me and scowled at her. She hated me, even though I pretended to be ok with her. I turned that other cheek so many times, my neck was hurtin.
Connie got pregnant way too early and not even married. She was 14 and he was 15. They tied the knot, but none of us thought it could last. It didn’t.
She ran off to be a drug dealer and sell herself. Left her man and baby for the streets. The whole family got ashamed, and it made me look even better. That was all I ever liked about her really. Next to her, I shined a lot, like a new car, and she was the wreck that never got fixed.
Looking at her in that casket, I felt nothin but disdain. She had it comin, didn’t she? An early death at age 40… her body burned out. She abused it, and punished her mom for years and didn’t make it. She just gave up. I never understood that kinda thinkin. My aunt acted angry at my mom a lot, and I think it was cause I turned out so much better.
And here I was at church hearin all this stuff and its making me turn red, wanna cry, wanna run, wanna tell God I am so sorry.
“Listen people. Wake up. Do you really think you are better than the worst of sinners? Do you measure yourself to others and think you come out all clean and sparkley? WAKE UP! You and I and the serial killer on death row have one thing in common. One thing that binds us to each other. Do not be deceived. WE all sin. We all have need of a Saviour. No one, no one, no one gets outa of this truth. Repent. God sees us for the sinners that we are.”
Now, you may get turned off by all this kinda preachin. Personally, I like the castor oil now and then.
My heart was warmin up hearing his words. My ears were perky. My soul was havin a fit restless as a hungry cat watchin the dog get fed.
I was that Fair a See. That was me. All high and mighty lookin at Cousin Connie and not even mournin her early death. Who does that? Whose heart is that cold and indifferent?
Drivin home from church that day, I did business with God. I told Him what I just told you. I told Him I was that Fara See.
To top it off, my aunt told me later, Connie the Con got saved in rehab the year she died, and I didn’t even know it. Here I was all judgin and comparing and feelin so superior, and she was dancin with Jesus at that very moment.
God help me.
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