Farewell, Guinevere

I'll never forget the first time I saw a musical production of Camelot.  From that moment on, I was absolutely hooked.  I read every King Arthur book I could get my hands on.  (The Once and Future King is still one of my all-time favorites).  I memorized all of the songs from the musical, and wished I'd been born twenty years sooner, so I could have seen Julie Andrews and Richard Burton bring down the house at the Majestic.  First Knight became one my top ten favorite movies (and still is).  There's just something about Camelot... its magic and mystery, its idealism and foundation on justice and love...

But here's the thing about Guinevere.  As a teenager, I thought she was pretty amazing - and she is rather interesting in terms of being a complex character in a story - but the older I get, the more I've come to the conclusion that regardless of the circumstances that led her to the choices she made, she was an idiot.  (Sorry, Gwen.  But really?  Lancelot was a dumb decision.)

There's this song by the Eli Young Band called Guinevere, and I've had it stuck in my head all week long, ever since about 2 minutes before someone asked me on Sunday (or maybe it was Monday?) if I had an anthem - a song that was central to and/or helping me thru the season I'm in.  All artists need their art to express and clarify and sometimes even teach them truth, and I am no different.  There have almost always been songs that I've turned to, and if I can't find a song that says what I need to say, then I write one.  So when a song shows up on repeat in my head, I've learned to pay attention.

Here's what I've learned from four days of sitting with this song:

1) I've changed.  And this is a really good thing.  There was a day when the girl in this song and I had far more in common than we do now, and it is the healing grace of God that's brought me this far.  That's just awesome.

2) Un-forgiveness is no longer my main issue.  I've learned so much about the true meaning of forgiveness over the past 15 years, and even when I do become angry with someone (and remember: anger is almost always a secondary emotion - meant to protect us from hurt or fear) - I'm pretty quick now to try to see the situation from their perspective, to remember that I'm human too, and to not hold (whatever it is) against them.  The practicalities of working thru tough situations - now that can still be challenging (I really dislike conflict!) - but I've made a lot of progress, and I am celebrating that.  I'm sure there's still a lot of room to grow here - and probably always will be - but progress is definitely worth celebrating.

3) Healing takes time.  This whole idea of trying to "find something quicker than Heaven, to make the damage of [our] days disappear" - isn't it so true of us?  We want a quick fix - we just want to be better.  Open-heart surgery and months of recovery are not on our agenda.  When we're hurting, we just want to stop hurting, and we forget that healing is a process - sometimes a very long and slow one.  There are things we can do towards it, but like Eustace in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, we cannot un-dragon ourselves.  We need Heaven to do that, and it's probably going to hurt like anything when He does.  And sometimes it just takes a really long time.   I am tempted, often, to be exasperated by my own inability to heal completely.  Something comes up and it turns out to be tied to something I thought I'd worked through and gotten past and it turns out there's another round of un-dragon-ing fun to go, and I just get mad at myself about it, instead of recognizing that (sigh) this part of the journey is just not yet over.  But Heaven knows (far better than I do) how and when to heal me, and His ways are perfect.

4) Running.  I'm still incredibly inclined to do that, emotionally.  I'm ... working on it.  In the most recent situation in which I've found myself tempted to run... I chose not to.  Mostly because God said, "No."  And I'm finding that being "still here" is... okay.  If slightly terrifying.  Because rejection remains possible.  And that would suck.  But not running is ... well, better.  And an adventure worth its inherent risks.  

So... farewell, Guinevere.  No more running, no more trying to fix myself.  Not as a way of life - tho I'm sure I will probably try to do both again at some point...  (sigh)

Nevertheless, I think... I think I'd rather just stay in Camelot.