As long as there are Easters I will always love Marilyn.
She was the voice on the other end of the phone on the Easter I confessed that I was too much of a nothing for Jesus to have died for.
I can’t remember what she said to me.
Funny, one would think words said in moments like that were permanent, not capable of melting and flowing away like every other thing.
What I remember was her not dismissing me. Or telling me what I could or could not say. Or feel. Or think. I remember there being no shock at what some born-and-bred Christians may see as blasphemy. I remember how she did not respond with a barrage of the words we learnt in church but never really understood.
She stayed, on the other end of the phone, in far away America while I held on to how she felt as my only link to a world I was sure would be better off without me in it. She said I could take all the time I wanted, and she was not leaving.
There weren’t many words.
There were tears, a lot of tears. And phlegm. I remember it being everywhere; running down my nose into my mouth, spread all over my face with my hands, and massaged into my hair with the same hands as I wished it would all just congeal up in my nose and choke me to death.
I took all the time I needed. And she was still there, on the other end of the phone.
And she said something along the lines of ‘I love you, as imperfect and human as I am, I love you. And right now the love I have for you is almost too much for my chest to handle. I don’t know what else to say, I don’t know how to make it better, I just know I love you so much and I wish I was by your side’.
Maybe that was it.
Or maybe it wasn’t.
I really don’t know what it was. Or at what point it happened.
Maybe all I needed was to know that “the failure and absolute good for nothing with nothing but sex to offer” girl I thought I was then was capable of being loved in that type of way. For no reason. No expectations. Just love. Maybe that was what I needed to know without a doubt: that Jesus could also love someone like me.
Easters always bring that day to mind.
It was a Good Friday.
The best Friday.
I get to celebrate many more Good Fridays because Marilyn stayed on the other end of the phone and reminded me that if an imperfect person was capable of loving me perfectly, how much more the Perfect One?
I think that’s what it means to be born again.
Kim sent this in this morning. I’m happy for the reminder that Easter was one huge show of love and we should reach out a helping hand of love to others in our world just like we were reached.