Will This Be What Hell Is Like, I Wonder?

She is taking forever, and I am about to scream: how long does it take a soul to examine a head of purple cabbage? My impatience bores blackly into the back of her head.

It bugs me that she is wearing a wide-brimmed hat.

1) We are safely indoors. 2) The huge brim takes up an unfair amount of public shopping space. 3) The hat radiates a mysterious ‘I-can-examine-vegetables-as-long-as-I wish’ force-field that makes everyone in the produce section uneasy. Like an open umbrella in a horse corral.

I’ve burned a thousand calories shifting from one foot to another, sighing, and snapping my green plastic bag in an unpleasant accordion motion. Oblivious, the umbrella hat tips forward, and dips right. No! No! No! Do not even think about picking up that Napa cabbage!

She picks up a Napa cabbage and begins to slowly turn it over and around, as if a sketch artist will appear at any moment and ask for a detailed description. Clearly, someone’s life depends on her being able to pick out this particular cabbage in a line-up.

I’ve been waiting a minute. Maybe less.

Deep inside I hear the deep timbre of true words needing to be heard. Right statutes being quietly offered for my good.

Do you see Me? Do you see all that I’ve made? Do you see the care for my people in all these good things?

Now, I realize my envy. I want what she has: sweet, leisurely time to really see a cabbage with all (and I mean all) of her senses. Suddenly, I am filled with regret. I want that ill-spent, precious minute back.

Will this be what hell is like, I wonder? Eternal minutes of impatient grumbling, as C.S. Lewis believed? Or shall it be the clear understanding that we deliberately chose not to see the beauty, goodness, gifts, life, or the Giver of them all? If heaven is being fully awake to all that is good – what may we expect of hell?

Do you see Me? Do you see all that I’ve made? Do you see the care for my people in all these good things?

Thank you observant, absorbed, giant-hat lady. You were a warning, a rebuke, and a heavenly gift to me. Somehow, I know you fully enjoyed every last bite of your perfect cabbage.

Peace to you all, and delight, as you enjoy God and his creation in all the minutes.



Seared Red Cabbage Wedges: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/03/health/nutrition/03recipehealth.html?ref=fitnessandnutrition

9 responses to Will This Be What Hell Is Like, I Wonder?

  1. vaneetharendall says:

    I completely relate to this Kim!!

  2. lindarose says:

    Thank you beautiful woman of God for sharing such a beautiful fresh deep breath of life with us!

  3. linda522 says:

    Whoa, Kim! This is hitting way too close to home – the grocery aisle, the place where my witness comes under attack on a regular basis. Truly, wonderful insights. Thanks for sharing …..

    Linda Gupton

  4. Cree says:

    Hi Kim
    Thank you for your post on “moments”. It is truly important for us to slow down and really “see” all that God has created and be patient in our lives. Patience slows down and allows us to really see what is truly valuable.

  5. Sandi says:

    I’m a lurker here, but I had to come out of hiding to thank you for this post. Late last year we moved to a small coastal town where there seems to be many more cars on the road than there should be…I have grown so frustrated with the traffic that it’s starting to affect me in other areas too. I never realized how impatient I am! I have a friend who says that the sanctifying process only brings to the surface what is already in our hearts – ouch. Thanks for a good reminder to slow myself down and lower my expectations that God is going to part traffic for me like he did the Red Sea for the children of Israel. 🙂

  6. Given Breath says:

    Ha!! That gave me a good laugh. Yes – traffic minutes and hell are synonyms. Thanks for coming out of the shadows, Sandi. You are a lurker no more. Kim

  7. writingjen says:

    This is me. I need to find more stillness in my life which is why I start writing about stillness on my blog tomorrow. And I need more patience, too. Thanks Kim!

  8. gerty29 says:

    Thanks for taking time to share the blessings found in the mundane. Your gentle rebuke and heavenly gift was also a gentle rebuke to my heart and a gift from my long suffering Father. Blessings.

  9. Lindsey says:

    It would never cross my mind to “stop and smell the roses”, so to speak, while waiting impatiently at the grocery store!! It’s always a good reminder to stop and think about these things, and realize that what might seem like someone who is taking up unnecessary time in your day might actually be helping you instead.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.