Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Greatest Lie

I find myself at a loss as how best to explain myself tonight.

It almost undoes me to admit it to myself let alone other people.

Since May I have had conversations with a man I met at one of my best friend's weddings in the middle of April. We have conversed about many things:
* our love of food--particularly regional and ethnic
* we have shared music back and forth and have common favorites
* we both love insane Youtube videos and ridiculous, stupid jokes, particularly puns
* He is intelligent and driven
* He doesn't take himself too seriously, but knows when to be serious...I think
* He is family-centric
* I can see him fighting to pursue God
* He has the fortune of being able to combine his great loves with his studies and his job
* I know where he spent one of the best months of his life
* I have seen him handle a stressful situation with multiple attention demands and not lose his head
* He knows exactly how to tease me and turn me a color of red you may never have seen before
* If he had to chose another name, I know what it is
* Seeing him only twice this summer, one planned, one by luck of the draw, made me excruciatingly nervous for absolutely no reason. Spending time with him and talking with him was as easy as breathing.

What am I trying to say with all of this? As if the first part of this was not entirely laser-lighted, I have a crush on him I cannot seem to get a rein on. The worst part, as my radar is worth nothing when it comes to this sort of interaction, I have not the foggiest if there is even mutual interest, despite others suggesting there is grounds to believe there is. Besides, what man would talk exclusively to one woman for such an extended period of time?

And you know what lie the Deceiver whispered in my ear at church that Sunday, at the end of July, as I sat next to this man in question? He slithered onto my shoulder and hissed at me, "Silly, Sheridan. What were you thinking? You believed a man like him: popular, tall, and handsome would actually find something equally appealing in you? How ridiculous. But I know, he's exactly your type: the athlete, the one all the girls love, handsome, smart, from a good family, with your ever pressing and ridiculous requirement: a Godly man, especially one who treats the women around him with respect. He is exactly your type, historically. You are forgetting one small, but crucial detail: You have never dated your type. Your type has never liked you back, not that they have said anyway. What makes you think he is any different? Oh, my hell, you are so predictable. Well, sweetheart, let me burst this bubble of yours now, as you have, clearly, gotten ahead of yourself.

"Shall we examine the facts that sit next to you in this exact moment in time? I think we should. How long have you know him, three months, almost four? If he were interested, would he not have done something about it now or at least come to see you in the Springs? Not necessarily, you say. The whole long distance thing, an excuse, but then let's evaluate this then shall we? Let's describe him: 6'8", muscular build as he still maintains a fitness regimen, even if it is not as rigorous as his basketball days, sharp features--the jawline--and what other preposterous way you put it: underlying facial architecture--and the blue eyes. Of course, how could I forget, as if you were not so utterly ridiculous, his left-handedness made him even more attractive to you. You see how unfairly tipped the scale is, though, my dear? You are a foot shorter than he is and while you are not ugly or fat, you certainly do not really think you have what it takes to stand by his side. You are plain at best and while you are a runner, you have done so infrequently this year that you are far from tone and you know he looks every inch it. And you have seen the girl, his ex. Sweetie, time to step out of the clouds, plant yourself on the ground. Your type is out of your reach. You and the basketball player. Or the Navy pilot. Equal vanity points. Equally outlandish matches. Why would he choose you? Just think on that. What in anything that has happened suggests he will choose you?"

It is amazing everything that can be said to your heart and mind and spirit in the space of a few seconds, even sitting in church. We think the church is sacred ground against the enemy, that we cannot feel his effects within its walls and he should be burned by even attempting something. He is more crafty than that, unfortunately. He has convinced the world He does not exist, why should a building stop him? What are physical barriers when space and time mean nothing to him? He will attack your soul just as soon as attack your body. And do you want to know what that feels like? It is a wedge that drives itself between you and the subject of the lie. It left me feeling agitated and worried the entire drive home and at points throughout the day as to whether I had done something wrong by sitting with him. What finally ended it was taking a moment and screaming at the lie and telling God over and over I did not believe it and then deciding to do something I had learned weeks before: communicate, ask instead of dread, face the truth and move forward. The man in question confirmed that I had believed a lie. He was glad he got to see me before I left the state and that we had not gotten to engage in what will be, I am sure, a quickly escalating prank war (when it happens).

I forgot, consumed by the lie, the foundation of all of this, regardless of whether or not he likes me in return: he is my friend. We can laugh and joke and tell each other how badly we want a drink without the other beating down and instead saying, "I can recommend a good tap room." The Devil does not get to have the last word if you do not let him. Let him call me names like bookish and plain, I was told bookish is a fantastic word that is not said enough. Who is plain now? I see the world through a different set of eyes than he does, yes, but that does not make me plain or not good enough for him, as the Devil may want me to believe. In fact, it might make me excellent for him in more ways than one. Perhaps that is what Lucifer knows, how we are together, perhaps he fears what even something as baseline powerful as a friendship can do. Why not fray the edges while I sit and worry and destroy it myself out of fear? Oh how he loves to whisper such silly little things. If only they did not reek of his own agenda and fears. We are more powerful together than apart--believers in communion with each other.

After all, if the greatest trick the Devil ever played is convincing the world he does not exist, how much damage would it do to his lie, to see believers calling his bluff? His web of deceit. Battling past his utter bullshit. It sounds to me like we might be exactly his type and he does not like to lose.

For us, it may begin as recognizing a single lie.
For him, it is the beginning of the unraveling of the fabric. I am not sure he believes in loose ends.

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