Me, myself, and more me

Monday – and I am mightily irritated because:

My refrigerator crisper froze my bag of fresh spinach.

My over-the-kitchen-island light fixture needs to be dusted.

My bathroom shower tiles are dingy plus a hint of soap-scummy.

My central-air compressor won’t push the cold air to the upstairs bedrooms.

My front-load washing machine has some mildew on the rubber door gasket.

My grocery store stopped carrying my favorite brand of snack crackers.

My all-in-one printer – scanner – copier is out of ink…again.

My iPod refuses to correctly sort my three favorite albums.

My dishwasher left gritty residue on the steak knives.

My car has a funny rattle under the front dash.

And my gas grill has a jiggly handle.

Really. It’s enough to make any reasonable (read: self-important) 21st-century woman throw up her hands in disgust, mutter unspeakables under her breath, and call it quits. Quite. Who, after all, can be expected to function under these desperate conditions?


[And now I will square off with myself and do battle with the ‘I’ that looms largely, always ready to rear her haughty head and claim her full share of centrality. I know her well and don’t think much of her. That Jesus willingly died for her is really quite astounding.]

[In Madeleine L’Engle’s A Ring of Endless Light, Vicky Austin reads these lines by the poet Thomas Browne:*

If thou could’st empty all thyself of self,
Like to a shell dishabited,
Then might He find thee on the ocean shelf,
And say, “This is not dead,”
And fill thee with Himself instead.

But thou art all replete with very thou
And hast such shrewd activity,
That when He comes He says, “This is enow
Unto itself – ’twere better let it be,
It is so small and full, there is no room for me.”


[*For all you L’Engle fans, there’s been a bit of rumbling about the authorship of this poem. L’Engle clearly attributes it to a Sir Thomas Browne who lived “at least three centuries ago” which would be the Sir Thomas Browne who wrote, among other things, Religio Medici. But in fact the poem’s author is T.E. Browne, a 19th century educator, theologian, and poet. You can read more about the mix-up here and can read the poem, titled “Indwelling,” here on page 82. Just in case you were wondering.]