“We have lost, I think, our proper sense of outrage, and what God does is often outrageous for no matter how much we think we know how God will act, God frequently acts in other incomprehensible and outrageous ways.” Br. James Koester, SSJE, from “Brother, Give Us a Word,” a daily email sent to friends and followers of the Society of Saint John the Evangelist, a religious order for men in the Episcopal/Anglican Church. www.ssje.org,.
What is outrageous! Every sunrise and sunset. The flowers and flowering plants and bushes and trees that appear in sequence in early spring, the crocuses, camellias, redbuds, forsythia, daffodils, tulips, Bradford pears, climbing wisteria, azaleas, roses, lilies, irises, magnolias, hydrangeas, geraniums, and finally the crape myrtle that last through the summer. Is there more? What about the yellow and red and orange autumn leaves on a crisp fall day? What about the secret waterfall that only you and a few friends and family know about? What about floating the Buffalo River? What about the view from Petit Jean Mountain or Mount Magazine? What about Two Rivers Trail along the Arkansas River?
I am just starting and talking about a small part of Arkansas, but I know each of you has many more outrageous spectacles to share.
I don’t know about you, but Outrageous meets me at every turn. When we look for her, we only have words of gratitude. Outrageous are our family members and friends who still love us even after getting to know us better. Even more so is the outrageous love of God. This is love that God gives us in so more ways than we cannot understand, knowledge too deep for words. As we try to stay connected to God and listen, we get little outrageous nudges, “not right, yes this is right.” Whenever I go again those gut feelings, I end up in a bad place.
I look back on my life and see that I have been so cared for even when I went down wrong paths. This is outrageous. This is the outrageous love of God, to stick with us in our one step forward and two steps back. We cannot comprehend it. We can only try in our feeble way to observe it and remember it and give thanks for the outrageous love and beauty given us.