A cold, internal stone wall held him prisoner, but somehow, he was held captive at the same time he was set free.
Like everyone who grew up there, he loved the beach, so when it was darkest inside, that’s where he drove outside.
It’s an isolated stretch of beach where few venture, especially at night. No one was around for miles. Inside he felt in 360 degree direction, yet outside, the full moon was shining nature’s night bulb so bright you could see your shadow.
He sat on the bumper in the warm, humid, salty air. The sea, rich in smell and wet sand gave off its familiar odor. Roaring waves crashed upon breaking waves which eventually slid gently in a thin glass sheet to where land starts and ocean stops.
The beach blared nature’s symphony as a swift breeze blew by giving a constant muffling sound, like when you listen inside a seashell, yet it was coupled with the percussion of noisy waves, followed with an occasional call of a wandering Killdee.
There was freedom, peace and comfort there. The beach just does that somehow. It’s a feeling that can’t really be explained, yet anyone who’s felt it instantly understands.
After watching waves dance by moonlight, tears exploded like a hand grenades and tears saltier than the ocean waves began to gush. Since no one was around, he began to moan in deep, painful agony.
The more he cried, the more emotional hot lava erupted from his heart, in turn causing deeper groaning, which caused even more hurt to spew. It was like a dam cracked, then broke and all the penned up, trapped water in a lake flooded everything down the line.
He looked at the moon in grief and shook his fist and asked, “Why, God, why!? God! Why!?”
No answer came, only moonlight, with the waves dancing, turning, twisting, singing the song of the beach.
His vision was blurry from streaming tears as he shook his fist now screaming at the top of his lungs, “I hate you God! I hate you! Why!? Why?! Why?”
Sometimes there’s no way to stand upright under the tremendous weight of a heart. He dropped to his knees in the powdery sand. His clenched fists opened to cover his face with only his knees, feet and forehead touching the sandy soil.
He sobbed uncontrollably. Deep emotion began to escape as each crumbling stone of his heart’s prison wall tumbled down in expounding pain. His body quivered from his heart’s agony as his breaking heart took hegemony of his soul.
It’s the sort of catharsis that seldom hits the human heart, the kind that is extraordinary, unexpected. It’s the kind that becomes a cleansing flood sweeping away clutter and debris piled up in the corners and basement of the heart.
With no recollection of time, he curled up in the fetal position facing the ocean, rocking back and forth.
On one hand he says now he’s not really sure what happened that night, but even years later remembers it in exquisite detail. Eventually the tears slowed to a trickle. He laid staring at the waves and moon until his internal consciousness began to rise from his pit.
He told me the same God he had just yelled hatred at somehow touched him in the deepest part of his soul that night. He knew the psychological, physiological, philosophical and theological reasoning, but what happened inside him that night can’t be fully explained by any of those. It was purely relational.
There’s something about laying in the fetal position, completely broken and spent, that allows God to help us see much more than moonlight. In fact, he said it was if God Himself was there covering him like a blanket, soothing him, telling him regardless of how he felt toward Him, He was right there beside him, all along the way.
He wasn’t sure how long he had laid there, but in that sand, he let it go. When he finally stood, he felt like he was in a thousand pieces, yet whole, broken, yet mended, weak, yet strong.
There was much I wanted ask this man, to understand, but what he shared was all he intended to share, and quite frankly, all he was going to. Any questions or comments would have been flatly rude, certainly not gratuitous after sharing something so deep and personal.
Even so I really wanted to know the cause of his heartache. Maybe more importantly, how to keep the cause of that heartache from happening again, but he said the cause was irrelevant.
Only the fix was remembered. Only the fix was needed. Only the fix mattered.
After pondering it a while, I think he’s right — the fix, and the Fix, is all that matters.