It was middle 2010 and frankly, I hated myself. The church might have called it “a struggle with sin”, but I didn’t believe that my struggle was worth overcoming. I didn’t believe I deserved to overcome it.
Then a friend of mine came to visit after a year in the States. In church I saw him, before he saw me. He looked as if he had had too much coffee; he couldn’t stand still. Similar to the way a dog greets you when you come home. It seemed as if there was something inside wanting to come out, like his skin was uncomfortable and he was going to burst. I remember him clutching at his chest, because the sensation was so strong.
He danced between people, paused to take in their being and then moving on. He hugged them, stroked them, grabbed them by the cheek. People didn’t know how to respond. Some giggled, some gave him weird looks and walked on. Some got into it and returned the enthusiasm.
I walked to him and when he saw me, he shot towards me, took me by the arms, looked at me for a moment and embraced me. Then he held me at arms length again and looked me up and down, more thoroughly this time and said softly, almost to himself: “you are so perfect”.
What changed my life was not so much what he said, for I heard it in church before, but that he believed it. Or maybe he didn’t have to believe it… maybe he saw it. And I believed him.