Monday, September 14, 2015

The Smartphone and the Prayerbook


The alarm infiltrates my mind, forcing my eyes to open.

I try to ignore its demands, but the better me wins and I rise out of bed.

Decisions.

A prayerbook. A rosary.

A smartphone. A PC.

Now is the moment to decide. Now determines my—

…with smartphone in hand, I proceed to the kitchen.

Tommy said this! Billy shared that! Sue posted this!

And my prayerbook and rosary lie unattended.

No worries; just a few moments more, and I can pray to my God.

In the shower my smartphone plays music for me while I think of my day ahead.

Such a wonderful device; it has everything I need in life.

And much, much more.

Just a few more moments, and I can pray to my God.

The car is impatiently waiting for me to arrive, its engine sputtering while I gather all my books.

All but one book, that is.

Just a few more moments, and I can pray to my God.

In class, I focus intently upon ways to better the world and impress with my knowledge.
In class, I focus intently on the cute girl in front of me.
After class, I focus intently on the bitterness from past wrongs.
And justify each and every action done by me.
Of course she deserved those harsh words.
Of course he deserves my hatred.
Of course it is my right to do what is not right.
Why should I forgive? It is not like someone ever forgave me for my wrongs. No one died for me.

Just a few more minutes, while I pray to my god.

My god told me my body is imperfect. Lose weight.
Yes, dear lord.

My god told me I don’t have enough friends.
Yes, my master.

My god told me I’m pathetic for not having a girlfriend.
Yes, my savior.

Look, says my god; Gaze upon those friends of yours with perfect, happy lives. It is written in Social Media: thou shalt conform into the image of the Plastic. Thou shalt not allow any Creator to direct and lead you into what you were meant to be.

Not now, I’m reading from my god’s scriptures.

And god said let us be shallow. And god said let us be self-righteous. And god said let us be hateful and bigoted and selfish and greedy and arrogant and boastful and independent from all and deceptive and dependent upon all and cut down others and worship those who make us feel pathetic and be with those we lust after and lust after those we cannot be with and gossip and trust only ourselves and compare ourselves to all and judge all and make ourselves our own gods in our own images…images stitched together on the envy and bitterness we soak in each passing moment…

…without even realizing it.

...

The end of the day.
Life is horrible. I want to die.

Oh look. A razor.

It would be easy. How many friends have better bodies, better hair, better lives than your pathetic self? You’d be doing the world a favor. Just make sure the blood drains in the tub, so your roommates don’t have to clean the floor.

The razor in hand. My life in my hand.

Oh look. A book.

I remember that book from this morning. And what a pretty piece of jewelry. Cheap, but…there is something about it…
And the memories reinhabit the forefront of my consciousness.

Love.

Joy.

Peace.

My soul has long been suffering.

“Almighty and most merciful Father; We have erred, and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; And we have done those things which we ought not to have done; And there is no health in us. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare thou those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore thou those who are penitent; According to thy promises declared unto mankind In Christ Jesus our Lord. And grant, O most merciful Father, for his sake; That we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life, To the glory of thy holy Name. Amen.”

With every tear that falls from my face, every stain of my self-destruction is destroyed. The razor is clenched in my hand, blood dripping from a tiny cut. The only blood spilled from my body for these sins.

Irritated and red, my eyes look up to the crucifix on my wall.

No Blood was shed in bitterness that day. No Flesh demanded to be healed. All for Love. All for…me.


I close my prayerbook, and hold my rosary in my bloody hand.