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Louise

 

Two days ago, Tom pulls this flyer off the porch.  I try to read over his shoulder.  “What is it?’ I say.  “Nothing,” he says, and balls the paper inside his fist, then chucks it into the trash can.

 

But I’ve seen the first couple of lines.  “Wait,” I say.  “I want to read it.”  I uncrinkle the page and read the above.

 

“Wow, someone’s not very happy with us,” I say.  “Shouldn’t ‘he’ be capitalized?”

 

“Grammar and punctuation wasn’t this person’s first priority,” Tom says.

 

“The tone is kind of bossy,” I say. “Makes me feel like stoning someone.”

 

In Manhattan, the black lady, who preached to my car on the A train more than once took a much more restrained tone.  She spoke softly but continuously until she got off at 145th Street.  She predicted the second coming and encouraged us to repent and put our lives in order, as the Bible tells us to do.  She cited scripture and verse, one after another, all memorized.  I always listened attentively watching her face.  She was neatly dressed and well-kempt, but people looked away from her mouth and its prophecies and warnings.  I always thought, I believe everything this woman is saying.  I believe it.  But does she have to be so weird  about it?  This is the A train for heaven’s sake.  We just want to go home in peace.

 

Calling people to repentance has never been cool.  Unfortunately.

 

There’s a precedent for prophetic lunacy.  Prophets living in caves and eating locusts and honey or standing on walls and yelling down at people, arms flailing, or marrying prostitutes, or not marrying at all and telling the rest of us not to either, unless we can’t keep our libidos in check; or that one man with several wives is okay; but then later it isn’t okay.

 

Still, they are prophets, so even with this crazy neighborhood flyer, I have to stop and ask, am I letting Satan in?

 

I don’t like being called to repentance anonymously.  It seems kind of chicken.  Jesus always identifies himself:  I am Alpha and Omega.  I am the Light of the world.  I am the bread of life.  I Am.

 

I am Louise Plummer.  I need to repent every second of my life and am grateful for the grace of God that allows me to do that.  Maybe I’ll make a flyer

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