It’s a beautiful day. The sky is periwinkle blue. Across a cornfield lie the brown hills of the coastal range, the ridgeline so clear I could cut it from the sky with a scalpel. It’s hard to imagine just two weeks ago, the sky was so orange with smoke that people were recreating scenes from Blade Runner in downtown San Francisco.
This year has been set up to mean so many things. In January, it was a year of promise, a phenomenon this world won’t witness again for a thousand and one years. “Will you do something for me this year, God?” That’s what I prayed. Take some action, move my life forward. I tried not to be specific, but there were things I’d been waiting for: a house, a career, a book, a car, a man. I had put in my time. I felt like I had been faithful and patient. And slowly, like steady drops in an empty bucket, I had begun to see results.
In the beginning of 2020, I felt I had grown to be more trusting. More loving toward who God made me. More beautiful, more at peace. I won a scholarship to attend a writing conference and I was having dreams.
And then, March.
I actually don’t remember the week all hell broke loose in our country. When skyscrapers were collapsing all around me, coming down like the Twin Towers. One then the other. Things I had been hoping for, praying for, suddenly gone. And voices in authority telling me it was all for my own good.
So I rebelled. I fought against the taking of things: freedom. Common sense. Community. I found myself surrounded suddenly by tape marks on the pavement, masks, and shuttered windows. Nauseating mantras were slung around: “we’re all in this together,” “stay safe.” For a week, I hid, too. Then when my adrenaline expired, I was left standing alone in the ashes of a changed world.
But has it changed?
I walk into a forest. The trees stand mighty in the wind. The river flows steady by my feet. Out here in farm country, the melons and the pumpkins are growing. The almonds have been harvested–it’s a strong crop this year. Outside on my new back porch, my morning glories are blossoming, moon-discs of purple among the heart leaves. The plants haven’t heard of the Coronavirus.
Neither, it seems, has God. In July, He gave me a house. In August, He gave me a car. Fourteen years of waiting, and in the midst of fires and riots, He gave me blessings. So I asked Him about it. Why now, God? Why 2020?
“This year is what I say it is.”
Not politicians. Not doctors. The narrative we’re living is still God’s story, and while we scurry around like ants on a hill that’s been flooded, He still holds the pen. And he’s always writing.
Now it’s September. There are still three months left in the year.
I can’t wait.