I am having a hard time trying to figure out what the Lord wants from me-and this has been going on for years. Excuse me if I come off as a bit bitter, I am perfectly aware of the plight of so many humans: homelessness, illness, Alzheimer’s, poverty…….I could go on all day. When I left my last job, I thought that Jesus had a plan…..last Summer I went full throttle into my business, The Vintage Rose-I take glass bottles from a century old dump on my property, sterilize them, paint and adorn the vintage glass with pearls, inexpensive gem stones, old Irish lace and linen, whatever I find around the house. The greatest expense is the paint, and I just returned from a half hearted trip to Walmart, to buy more paint, brushes and the newest rage-paint on stone. I did this with the optimism of a tortoise crossing the highway….not wanting to get smashed to smithereens, but not really caring if I did…..get smashed…..to smithereens.
Last year my earnings totaled $11.79. I had a beautiful Summer stand set out, underneath our large maple tree-where I displayed vintage vases and jars of every color, containing every flower you could name. I had old stoneware made into planters, and I replaced the flowers and jars just about every day. Not one person stopped, not one person called. I took up writing for the purposes of therapy, and it helps-as long as I don’t look at the statistics, I’m fine. It thrills me to no end that I have an opportunity to help someone else, but, my self esteem in the toilet, it is often just another slap in the face.
I take care of a homeless man on Fridays, but even that has turned into a ridiculous battle between good and evil. Last Friday, while Marcellino was running every which way to avoid moi, I stopped and chatted with his Uber driving friend.
“Have you seen Marcellina,” I cheerfully asked him. Although he had met me numerous times, the cabbie looked at me as if I was melting before his very eyes.
“The homeless man, your friend, Marcellina, he stands here every day.”
It appeared to me as if he was hiding something and it looked like it was Marcellina.
“Oh, you mean MARCELLINO?????” Seriously? What the Harriet Truman? How could he not know of whom I was speaking? Irritated, I crossed the street and found his box of “belongings.” I was shocked to see one beat up pillow and a cigarette-how could this be? For months I had been giving him clothing, raincoats, towels and a brand new pillow…not to mention my favorite camo cowboy hat!!!!!!!!! Was he SELLING these things to BUY DRUGS??????? Am I really this STUPID???????
I put down the jerky, the cold water, homemade fruit salad and the super economy sized pack of ramen noodles. As I ran across the street to get my jeep, I discovered that I had been schooled: no good deed goes unpunished.
So, Jesus, when you decide what on earth it is you want me to do with my life, I’ll be here waiting…..but please enlighten me soon-before I give up on myself, this world, and the human beings who inhabit my space.