There we were, just taking the scenic route, over White Pass, through the Wenatchee Forest, when we came upon the unexpected.
There are times when I find whimsy in the unexpected and nonsensical. This wasn’t one of those times. “STOP!” I say to the driver, my husband, as he cruises by, purposefully oblivious.
“What?” he says. “What?”
“Turn around, right there,” I say, pointing to a store nearby. “I want to see what that was all about.”
“You want to see what what was all about?”
“That place back yonder with all the signs,” I reply.
He pulls into the store, turns back around, lets out a long sigh. This is his punishment, he figures, for marrying the Southern woman. The one he thought so charming all those years ago but who just wears him out now with her “Looky-See” ways.
“It’s like finding Howard Finster in the foothills of the Cascades,” I say.
“Not quite,” he says, pulling the car into the Post Office parking lot. “Finster did art. This isn’t art. “
“Okay. You’re right,” I agree. ” This might be the West Coast version of Wildman of Kenneshaw, Georgia instead. C’mon.”
“I’m not going anywhere,” he said. My husband has a fear of flag-waving nutzo who post signs that say NO TRESPASSING and THIS PROPERTY PROTECTED BY GUNS AND GOD.
“Well give me some money,” I say.
“I might need to buy some art.”
“You have a credit card.”
“Yeah, I’m pretty sure this isn’t the sort of place that accepts credit cards.”
Sure enough there was a CASH ONLY sign hanging among the other signage.
I walked around by the back door. Whoo-Hoo! Whoo-Hoo! I called.
Nobody answered when I called out. But then again, nobody shot at me either. I accepted that as a good sign.
If I lived alone in the country, I’d fancy myself a word artist like Finster. I’d plaster my yard and house with word art.
When Faith moves out, worry moves in. When Faith moves in, then worry moves out. What the World needs is Faith, Finster said.
The world is full of words. Words plastered on Facebook. Words on blogs like this one here. Words on the back-ends of vehicles. Words tattooed on people’s backsides. Words on Twitter. Words on Instagram. Words on Reddit. Words on YouTube.
People congregating around words like dead bodies needing tending.
Such worrisome words coming at us, a barrage of gunfire all day long.
It’s easy to forget that in the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God and the Word became flesh.Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.
It’s easy to disremember the power of the Word used correctly.
To give life
To provide light.
To invoke toward goodness.
To build up
To be a salve to the wounded.
To say to another, let’s move beyond our hurt, our anger.
To say to yourself, forgiveness is mine.
Karen Spears Zacharias is author of Mother of Rain.