The Clash was a great band. I still find it incomprehensible that Joe is dead. I typed this at 5:30 AM this morning and erroroneously wrote that Mick Jones was dead. Everyone will be relieved to know that he is not. Thanks to Stephen for his gentle query about this. Train in Vain is our Friday traditio. It's a pretty mellow groove for these guys, but works on a rainy spring morning.
"Now I got a job
But it don't pay
I need new clothes
I need somewhere to stay
But without all of these things I can do
But without your love I won't make it through"
Random access memory brings to mind these lyrics: "Through many dangers, toils and snares I have already come." Where's the connection? It is precisely here- because it is my path to destiny and I am grateful to have so many companions on my way. By companions I mean those who love me by loving my destiny, too, who, in the words of the traditio for this week, stand by me, especially the One who is always present to me.
Those who know me, especially those who know me well, understand that I live intensely and push a lot of envelopes. In some ways I have paid quite a high price, but it pales in comparison to the cost of my conscience and integrity, which is the due I owe to the One gave Himself for me, the same One who said: "I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves" (Matt. 10:16). Consequently, I have had many not stand by me. You know what? I'm glad you can't run from yourself, though it's tempting to try because I certainly make no claim to always get it right. In other words, I need to work on being both wise and innocent because sometimes I am neither, but I never need companions more than when I lose my footing. With Him I can stand in front of reality, not defiantly, but quite humbly, without averting my gaze, or even flinching. When I flinch, I'm still standing, even if it's only because He's holding me up. Passion is, indeed, a fashion. I know that it is not one suited to everybody.
I don't mind saying that I have packed about three months worth of stuff into these past two weeks. Once I am done preaching this weekend, I am going to chill, thesis-writing mode. Getting my steely-eyed, academic pedant on.