Letter to God: Hearts of Stone

Dear God,

Whenever I’m really at a loss to figure out something, my brain starts reaching for random metaphor that won’t help, like the Heart of Gold from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

In Hitchhiker’s Guide, Heart of Gold is this ship that flies by balancing probabilities. How interesting would that be? I don’t know. We’d have to give it a try to see for sure. No telling what might happen.

I feel like my problem for the day/week/month is what about selfish people? To be clear, I’m totally with you, dad, when it comes to saving everyone. I have literally constructed entire multiverses in my brain for the purpose of finding some way to get through to people, to let them know that God loves them and has a place in forever just for them – and their loved ones.

Hardhearted people who look out only for themselves – this stumps me. It’s like trying to find a place to plug in your phone while at the airport, if all the walls were made of lava. And then you’re like wait, this isn’t an airport. This is my worst nightmare. And then you wake up and go put it all in a blog post.

I have different feelings about different kinds of self-involvement. There’s self-involvement due to trauma. For that, there is all compassion all the time.

Then there’s people who have found a way to hack the system where they realize, hey, I can get more happiness by a) making people around me miserable or b) not particularly caring about them.

This particular nut is hard to crack. Just ask these squirrels.

I’m honestly not sure about this one, which is why I’m asking. Do you think maybe there’s a certain kind of crazy that needs to really experience some sense of its own mortality before it can even think about maybe repenting?

If you’re going to live off everyone else, eventually you’re going to run out of people and be alone. Someone will eventually save other people from you, because that’s what interventions and therapy and real friends are for.

There are some people, I’ve found, who just don’t want to be helped. Not really. There are different reasons for this, some perfectly understandable. For example: I’m good where I am now, so “help me” by giving me space. Or else, like a drowning person lost in trauma (definitely been there) I keep “accidentally” hurting people who are trying to help me – or ask for basic directions – or who stray too close. That, I get.

If selfishness is due to trauma that’s one thing. Heal the trauma. If it’s due to a conscious decision buried deep in someone’s personality and sense of self? That would be the point where my first, second, and third thought involve removing all of the oxygen from the room and then checking back in a thousand or so years. After long enough without anyone to feed on, no one to torture or tempt then torture, I bet even the hardest-hearted narcissist might start to figure things out.

At bare minimum, we’d have one less problem to figure out while we figure out how to fix all the damage caused by original sin. How to find better ways to spend our time and be happy that don’t involve hurting other people or pretending we can’t see their pain.

Repentance is so much easier. Like washing your hands for 30 seconds. Which I keep forgetting to do, because no one is perfect. But sometimes just those small, unseen actions are, I think, all God needs to be like, oh good, still some signs of life in there. I was worried for a sec.

As for the rest? Honestly, dad, tell me what to do here. I am stumped.

With love, a crazy kind of love that should (probably) know better than to ask,

Anne

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