An Evening out in the World -- By Cate Kennedy Marsden

A treat.

Something special between me and my daughter. Our family had all branched out into other pastimes for the evening, and so it was us, just her and myself.

We settled on Pizza Hut for our "girls night" out, but only after much debate in the DeMoulas Supermarket parking lot, trying to decide what it was we were hungry for.  Pizza. Fine. Sounds good.

Our booth was right next to the salad bar, she saw that fresh romaine and smiled. What a good girl.

Chicken pizza with onions and peppers and mushrooms for chubby Mama.  We smiled at one another and rolled our eyes at the lovey-dovey couple across the room, obviously in love. We prayed for the protection of our "boys"; her dad and brothers; my husband and sons. We chit-chatted with the lovely waitress who has a little boy who goes to school with the youngest in our own family. We we're sitting being happy. Gratefully "in love" with one another, the way it's supposed to be between a mom and her daughter. I was silently thanking our God for all my tender mercies, especially the one across the table from me. Waiting, I took out my little Daily Devotional to read. We sipped our ice teas and enjoyed the moment. Perfect as far as life's moments can be. Quiet, peaceful, loving, happy, and getting ready to eat something yummy. All the same, I wished the never-ending background music would go away.

Now, to me, background music sounds a lot louder these days. And there's really no place to go where background music isn't being played. And this isn't like classical background music, the standard for years. No. It's all types of music. Good and bad. Some songs make me involuntarily sing along, much to the chagrin of any family members who happen to be with me and within earshot.

Some songs simply make me cringe. Some just make me sick with their words. For me, "Sympathy for the Devil" by the Rolling Stones is the number one song in the world that creates in me a feeling of extreme torment. And wouldn't you know it. This song comes on. 

I sit there looking up into the picture perfect sky, knowing God is returning my gaze. I become even more uncomfortable knowing God is being mocked royally, and that no one seems to notice. No one notices, or no one cares? I get disgusted thinking of my youth, and how I danced to this song feverishly at a party. I know I am forgiven, but still, the vileness of it lingers remembering how I didn't even understand, or maybe I just didn't care back then. I didn't know God back then. Back then, I was on my own. I look down at my Daily Devotional, chock full of passages of truth and beauty and promise and grace. I pray the 'Our Father' silently while Mick Jaggers narrates for Satan going on about guessing his name.  I don't need to guess.

I already know. The Bible tells me all about him. All I need to, or would ever want to know.

I sit there, wondering about the state of this world, more closely, the state of this nation in just it's disastrous judicial decisions to boot God out of everything, just everything, but especially in the public schools of our country. I think how today, it's okay to hate God or just not believe in God, or to mock God, and please, please, never ever mention Jesus's name in a public place for fear the ACLU will strategically ram themselves down your throat for the audacity to try and force Christianity as the One True religion! Never do that! Well, okay. You can screech His name if you hit your thumb with a hammer, or someone tick's you off, or if you get stuck in any traffic. Then, fine, saying Jesus Christ is quite politically correct.

But, remember, not on "Touched By An Angel", or "Seventh Heaven" or anything. That's a no no. He's a No No. But "Sympathy For The Devil", commonly acknowledged as the devils theme song, is quite okay in Pizza Hut. I don't get it. I guess I don't want to get it. Maybe that's the problem with this world. It's too scary if you actually dwell on it.

But it's real. It's here, and we are too. God help us.

Written by: Cate Kennedy Marsden