“Even when I’m crazy, God is still God. God has me when I’m crazy.” So says a person I know who struggles with paranoia and bi-polar disease. He was in the middle of one of his occasional paranoid rants some time before worship began. After a few minutes of a routine I now consider normal, he paused and looked around the sanctuary. That’s when he said what he did.
Paranoia seems to be the only rational reaction to life on our streets right now. Four women, allegedly somehow tied to the sex industry, were recently found dead on the other side of the city. Food sources are drying up so quickly it makes my head spin, and the Detroit News today reported there might be a billion dollar surplus in the 2011 state budget, which many people in power are declaring a victory. The budget was balanced almost exclusively by raising taxes on the elderly and slashing funding to all levels of childcare and education.
It’s official, I am paranoid, and it feels completely rational. It is January 4th and we have not yet had snow in
. The lakes are not frozen over. We cannot keep warm clothes in the Spirit of Hope clothing pantry before they disappear to those who need them. The preschool is about ready to dry up in funding, and a few thousand extra dollars show up, unexpected and brilliant. There was an earthquake just down the road in Michigan the other day, caused by fracking. Ohio
It was New Year’s Day Sunday and everyone was expected to be at home asleep recovering, and we had nearly regular attendance numbers in worship. I feed the fowl on a cold morning and Auntie Roberta, the large white Spirit Farm turkey, rubs against my legs like a cat looking for affection. By 8:30 in the morning I see more people I know in the Family Dollar than I do in the neighborhood bar 8:30 at night. The budget is never balanced but somehow there is just enough.
Nothing is predictable. Maybe it never was, but it seems even less so now. The massive amount of unpredictability leaves people without stability, reliability and a sense of peace. Even positive, unexpected change has a way of throwing people off, leaving us with a sense of paranoia. I cannot help but think of the man possessed by demons, hanging in the tombs near the Gerasenes. Jesus confronted that man as if nothing was unexpected or unusual. Maybe Jesus understood the man’s insanity was really quite rational.
Even when I’m crazy, God is still God. God has me when I’m crazy.