When we were kids I learned how to poke a hole in both ends of a raw egg and blow the egg white and yolk out, leaving a hollow shell. I don’t remember why we did this, probably for an art project, but I do remember how fragile the egg was once it was empty. It had to be carried with a gentle hand or it would crush in your grip.
Truth be told, eggs are fragile things to begin with. A boiled egg is the firmest. You could possibly walk around with one in your pocket – I don’t know why you would, but for the sake of discussion, let’s say you needed to. A raw egg is more fragile than boiled, but if you had a big enough pocket you could probably manage it as long as you didn’t make any sudden movements. But even if you found a way to get a hollow egg in your pocket, you wouldn’t be able to move or breathe without crushing it.
Sometimes I feel like I’m walking around with a hollow egg in my pocket.
(Note: Walking around with a hollow egg in your pocket is different from walking on eggshells. Walking on eggshells is a path someone else lays for you. Eggs-in-pocket is self inflicted. Trust me, I’m an expert.)
I don’t know what triggers these feelings, except that usually it’s on the heels of tragic news that others are facing. And I think, “If them, then why not us?” Then courage and joy drain out of me – leaving me hollow and fragile.
And though some people can make beautiful art out of empty eggs shells. I’d rather not. And not because I don’t think beautiful things can come out of our challenges. I do. But because this is a challenge I don’t think I should have.
There, I said it.
I don’t think feeling that life is so fragile that I can’t exhale is true, or real, or healthy. It goes against what I believe to be true and real and healthy.
Albert Wolters in Creation Regained said this: “If your action is out of tune with your beliefs, you tend to change either your actions or your beliefs. You cannot maintain your integrity (or your mental health) for long if you make no effort to resolve the conflict.”
Clearly, something needs to change. Either my beliefs or my actions.
Since I recognize that my feelings (which are daughters to my thoughts and siblings to my actions) can change like the wind, I will put my money on my faith (my beliefs) as the foundation of my life. Therefore, once again, my feelings need to be brought up to speed to what I believe to be true.
So the questions I must ask are these: Is life fragile? How fragile is it? And in who’s pocket am I travelling?
I’m always giving y’all my answers and revelations at the end of my blog posts, but this time I’d rather not. For one reason, I’m sick of being preachy, and for another reason, I’m not there yet. I’m still on that journey. I don’t have those answers. I’m revelationless.
Of course I would love to have an “aha moment” that makes everything feel solid again. And trust me, I’ll share it with you if I do! I’d even be happy with several small aha’s. But I don’t get to plan these things. They come as God sends them. And sometimes he works in other ways, more slowly, through the usual hours of our days.
And sometimes we have a lifetime of learning and relearning the same things over and over. These we sometimes call our demons, though I prefer to think of them as little yippie dogs that bark incessantly at our heels. They’ll never reach your jugular, but they are highly annoying and troublesome.
Well, demons or dogs, here I am, empty egg shell that I am.
Or rather, empty egg shell that I feel that I am.
We’ll see what happens. I’m hopeful.