Sometimes our most comfortable situation needs to be spoilt. Spoilt for a good cause. By grace.
So it’s 3am, Dubai time, am wide-awake though I had fallen asleep only 3 hours ago. It is not insomnia. At least this time. It’s jet lag. After a 16 hours flight from LA where I was working for the last 4 days, I thought it would be nice to have a break and rest in Dubai for 2 days before I proceed home. But here I am, jet lagged. Decided to get off bed. Switched on my side lamp. Pray. Read the Bible (Genesis 12) where I was again reminded of God’s grace- i.e. God always working with wicked people- like Abram. Yes, Abram. Later known as Abraham. He lied. Saying his wife is his sister. Selling his wife for the price of survival. Cheap. I always thought death is cheaper than love. Abram forgot that. But even with such a mistake, God still forgave him and furthermore blessed him to become father of many nations.
After my devotion, I started looking for things to read. Trying to avoid Tanzania’s newspapers as am fed up with CCM primaries. I similarly avoided international media outlets. Did not want to come across Greece issues. The book next to me, “The Art of Being A Lady” was not so appealing for such ambiance. Silent early hours. I needed something more challenging. Hard.
So I took my phone I saw a notification. It’s of Teju’s Cole’s post. It was irresistible not to open and read it, of course. So the post was brief yet powerful. It was about the poem he read to his fellow holidaymakers on a boat. The context was that they were riding on a boat in serene quite waters of Mediterranean. Without trying to repeat what Teju Cole wrote, he remembered a phrase by one writer that “We know about these beautiful waters that have death in them”, then a poem by Warsan Shire titled “Conversations About Home” and he decided to read it to the fellow holiday makers. The reactions were mixed. But all in all, he had spoilt most of those people’s holiday mood. Reminded them of the “death” in the still waters they are enjoying – the stability in the homeland. In the pockets. In their brains. Yes, spoil them…it’s important.
Sometimes, in life we get so comfortable and forget the suffering around us. The immediate stability we enjoy in our faces hides us from the real world. We who are privileged think we have the right to enjoy. The right to be where we are. The right to stability. Worse enough we think we deserve these privileges because we have worked so hard. I want to remind you, it’s always by grace and never by works.
But we only enjoy the grace when we realize it. Then share it. Otherwise it is not sustainable. I want to, again, remind you not to count your blessings, but your grace. It is important. And just like Sarah Jessica Parker, yes the actress in the Sex and The City, let’s put the word “Grace” on our phones’ screens or computer desktops, or on whatever we happen to look at everyday… so we can always remember grace and let grace determine how we see other people and deal with the world.
Grace will make us better citizens. And just like Teju Cole, let’s not be afraid to remind people of “grace” even in places where it may look very inappropriate. Because grace is frameless. It has no borders.
So, the article has also spoilt my rest- and I’ve decided to get off and blog, then work- so I can positively contribute towards a stable world for every soul.