I went shopping today.
I used to like shopping. I used to like a lot of things I no longer care about. Adding to my stash of worldly goods just doesn't seem to be a big deal any more. You have provided everything I need. All I want. Well, everything except what I'm about to ask you.
From the Goodwill store to the mall, shopping has become an immersion in worldly sewage that leaves me feeling like I need a shower. It's not the act of shopping. It's the world I must shop in. I don't want to be judgmental, Lord, I know you love them too. But most of the time I feel like I've been dropped in from another planet.
- The obese lesbians couldn't have been more than 20 years old, standing in front of me in line, buying men's clothing. The harshness in their features made me want to cry.
- The anorexic, multi-pierced sales clerk couldn't get off her cell phone long enough to answer my question. Apparently loud discussion wither her baby-daddy about last week's partying couldn't wait. I prayed for her. Was that enough?
- And the music. Oh, Father. I can hardly stand it. The stores aren't selling clothing anymore. They are selling sex. Sensuality. Lust. As if the naked posters aren't enough, the lyrics have to groan out exactly what will happen if you buy these skanky clothes. And the 13-year-olds are lapping it up.
- The clothing makes me blush and they are still on the hanger. Clothes that a decade ago were worn only for working prostitutes are now being bought by the mothers of preteens. "We want little Julie to be popular!" Why does a latex, sequined mini skirt and matching bra come in a preteen size? Or a teen size, for that matter. What's wrong with people?
- The security guards roamed everywhere, eying us all like the potential criminals we are. And why not steal? Current morality says if I don't get caught, it isn't wrong. They have to make sure we get caught. It's like a game. May the sneakiest win.
- The effeminate male who giggled loudly as he teased a clerk by grabbing her breast turned out to be the manager. I guess his sexual preference left her nothing to worry about, but it made me sick. I couldn't get out of that store fast enough.
I am so homesick for you and home I can hardly stand it. The only thing that keeps me going sometimes is the knowledge that you understand. Jesus was here. He knows. He felt this way too. Covered in this world's raw sewage, he pressed on until he had done everything you'd sent him to do.
And then, I notice he didn't stick around any longer than he had to.
So that's what I'm asking for. I want to come home. The minute my job is finished, let's go. I don't want to stick around either. Please give me the strength to finish everything you sent me here to do, and then get me out of here. Keep me faithful to my last breath. I refuse to quit before you say, "Time's up," but I won't be sorry when I hear that sound.
Father, I miss you. I want to come home. How much longer?