Dillard pays attention. It is a constant habit. She scrutinizes the universe and everything in it, from the showy cardinals and bluejays that insist on being noticed, to mosquitoes and larva and microbial organisms. In all these things, Dillard is dusting for the fingerprints of God.
That means she believes that the blueprints exist on the cellular level. The smallest of things reflect divine intelligence in some way. I want to believe that, too, because, at the moment, I don't see a whole lot of meaning in what's going on in my country right now. All the worst elements of American society seem to be taking over.
I have a friend who has dual citizenship. He grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, just a few miles away from me. Yet, he has spent a large portion of his adult life studying and working in New Zealand. My eight-year-old son calls him The Hobbit.
Well, The Hobbit moved back to the United States a few years ago. He's been teaching at a university on the West Coast. I saw him this summer, and we got to talking about the presidential election. He told me that he had an "out." If the Donald won the election, The Hobbit planned to move back to New Zealand, which has, among other things, universal health care. (On a side note, he has also volunteered to be one of the crew members for the first manned mission to Mars.) I'm not sure if The Hobbit has booked his plane tickets back to New Zealand or Mars. Haven't heard from him yet.
However, I'm sure that The Hobbit, like me, is at a loss for meaning at the moment. He claims to be an atheist, which makes the seeming hopelessness even more hopeless for him. Because I am a Christian, I have my "out," as well. Here it is: when humankind fucks things up royally, God rolls up Her sleeves and gets to work. She spreads the manure around, steps back, and makes the flowers grow.
So, while The Hobbit is checking on airline prices and despairing, I am going to be on the lookout for the bluejays and daffodils. The peacocks and bee balm. That's what I'm thankful for tonight--a recklessly merciful and creative Almighty.
Saint Marty still believes that, in the end, good will win, even with Sauron in the Oval Office.