Becoming a Change Agent
Every day I hope to hear from God.
Sometimes I do. Other times I think I do, but maybe not so much.
Sometimes I try to sit in still, quiet places, hoping to receive even a faint transmission that might be coming through, just for me. Too often, I stay busy, desperately trying to drown out things I’ve heard and seen, thoughts I’m sure don’t come from heaven.
There’s so much noise.
In contrast, I hear the sound of my granddaughter’s tiny voice with her little lisp, and the world becomes almost perfect. The band plays outside of Soda Pops to the street audience sitting in retro-cool, metal chairs. There are vendors selling their wares and a Tom and Jerry child’s motorcycle ride that Saydee can’t enjoy because I don’t have a couple of quarters.
We ended up at the Sugar Shack after a long ride and discussion about why our plans to go to the yogurt store didn’t work out.
“It’s closed, Saydee Grace.”
“My mom told me to go to the yogurt store.”
“I’m sorry. We took too long at the river, and now it’s closed. We can go to the Sugar Shack. You like the Sugar Shack. We haven’t been there since you were much smaller. They have games. It will be fun.”
“I want vanilla ice cream, Grammie.”
Now we are standing in line. It’s past dark and past bedtime. The tired is kicking in, but she will not give in because even a pre-schooler can sense when it’s Saturday night and fun must be had.
“Do you want it on a cone or in a cup?” Please say cup. Please say cup. It’s a 100 degrees outside I always let her get stained up and dirty. There will be dripage.
“Great! Are you buying?” I only asked because securely under her armpit, wherever she goes, she has this hot pink owl purse attached. Her mom told me she likes to buy stuff.
But Saydee looked at me with this over-tired, suddenly sad face and then down at her bag as she shook her head in shame. I didn’t understand it. “Do you have your coins?” I asked to a bowed head and more floor facing, “It’s okay. Grammie can buy. You can get it next time.”
We sat up high on the bar stools and tried to draw with the broken Etch-a-Sketch. We enjoyed a game of table bowling and connected the barrel of monkeys. The vanilla cone dripped, but only on my hand. Saydee ate the last of my Bomb Pop without my permission and found that hilarious.
Then she wanted a gumball. There were so many machines to choose from, who wouldn’t? But we couldn’t.
“I’m sorry. I don’t have any change.” She took it like a trooper. We walked next door to Soda Pops, got a Sprite and a Coke and listened to the band who always seems to take a break when I sit down to listen. So we left. And Saydee started to make the climb up to her car seat when her moody mystery was suddenly solved.
“Here they are Grammie!” She squealed with delight while holding up another billfold I’d never seen before. “Here they are! I found my coins! See!”
“Oh my gosh! I do see! Do you want to go back and get a gumball?”
“Of course!” she said, so, so happy.
Then she rode the Tom and Jerry ride, got a red gumball and we left for home to lay on the couch and watch Disney’s Moana. Her eyes unblinking, she was hooked,”What happened to her Grammie?”
“I don’t know. Let’s watch and see.”
Watch and wait. Wait and see.
The next morning, I got up, left my sleeping family, and went to church. I’m past the nagging and dragging. I’ve traded forced obedience for Sunday morning peace.
Right now, I’m reading Robert Morris’s Frequency and went to worship with high hopes of hearing from God. Prayers work better from the altar, so I went down to the front and semi-knelt by the stairs because that’s all the farther my knees would bend. I was also in front of a large crowd wearing Apple Bottom jeans that don’t cover the entire bottom.
A gentle hand touched my right shoulder. I couldn’t hear what they were saying. I need to hear from you, God. Another person moved behind me and touched both shoulders which are frequently halfway up my neck. A little to the left, please.
I am not up for it Lord. I do not have it in me to change myself, my circumstances or the people I love. I don’t know how or what to do next. Help. Please.
Suddenly, I saw this scene behind my closed eyes.
A beautiful, sparkly, trickle of gold coins falling from the sky. They were raining down all around me and falling into a huge pile. It looked like the heavenly version of where Moana found the missing hook, on the back of that sea turtle thing or whatever it was. I have yet to see the movie 19 times which I’m sure I’ll do.
That’s when I heard a still small, un-lispy, whisper. I went back to my seat and dug through my purse to write down what I didn’t want to forget. On the back of a wrinkled up Las Palapas receipt from July 13, I wrote, “You are are trying so hard to be the change.”
“I am the change.”
“I am the change you need.”