Updated: Apr 17, 2020
Tears cascade down desert wastelands, as guilt and shame flow through broken skin. Each drop trapped in a bottle and buried deep, corked and abandoned in a canyon of regret. The soul polluted by years of waste that piles through endless valleys. Thorns and thistles choke what remains as lifeless desires corrupt progress.
Ceaseless notifications cause the table to tremor, Seth kneels by the bed, wondering what is next. The cycle begins and ends at the same place, bedside with another confession. Wet spots make the couch unusable as what's her name just left before the movie even started. With amazement, Seth wonders aloud how even he could buy that lie.
The night is still young and the phone serves as a reminder that there are other options. Plus the one that just left could not be wife material if she was that easy. Seth knows that he has simply switched horses on the merry-go-round and has convinced himself he will not end up where he started. But even he is not that foolish.
Hands clasped together at the foot of the bed, Seth mimics the prayer he has offered before. Knowing he is guilty he must confess, but he just matched with a girl that says she loves Jesus. Eyelids closed, Seth feels his pupils darting to the next attraction. Each ride is shorter and each hill less impressive, but sometimes you have to ride a wooden coaster to know what an upgrade truly feels like, but his heart grows somber all the more.
Slowly the soul hardens as its fluidity drips into a desert that absorbs the hope that remains. Slowly the desert drains the little hope that prevents the soul from drying up and forfeiting all sense of goodness entirely, but everything in the desert seems so attractive.
Slowly Seth feels an emptiness in his chest as his mind races between guilt, shame, and fear. Salvation, of course, unattainable through merit, should be a comfort in a time of need, but Seth knows He has ignored the gospel. Death, of course, seemingly closer as influential figures slowly dissolve in an overpriced box and headstones become portals to conversing with those already gone. Should Seth die at this moment would God, who knows the heart, save his soul which He knows to be completely wretched?
Through a cloth filled mouth pipes up what remains of the voice of reason, quite possibly the Holy Spirit, to further complicate the repetitive debate of unresolved issues in Seth's mind. Despite trying to strangle the Spirit, its hallowed whisper thunders all the more boldly.
"Who are you, oh foolish man, to make a judgment that is not yours to make? You continue to attempt to play God when forgiveness was never man's to give, even to oneself. You try and fail, seeking the same oasis that reveals itself to be a mirage that further drains what is left of your living soul."
Knowing the Holy Spirit is truth, Seth knows there is no debate. But slowly, anxiety wraps around his neck, reminding him that guilt and shame will never cease for all in darkness will be brought to light. But by the same account, love lost will continue to cultivate insecurity that can only be offset by the physical lust of a woman. Wondering into a room with a phone that connects Seth to the world, he recognizes he is alone. But loneliness ceases when the world is a mirage full of endless notifications and broken people seeking an irrational fulfillment for an endless problem. Matches and snaps a reminder that someone out there is willing to forfeit what is left of their dignity to not feel the same loneliness that plagues humanity to the point of suicide. A world that is concerned with the population growth yet cannot solve the mystery of anxiety as humanity turns to a device to fulfill an intimate issue.
Slowly Seth picks up the phone and swipes right. Another professing Christian who is just as desperate not to be alone, even if they die in the desert together. A pseudo-romantic end to a foolish relationship and Seth just wants one more reminder that his value has not passed away.