One of my favorite foods is roasted corn with salt, chili, and lime. I willingly acknowledge that form of corn is pretty. This is food best consumed on the streets of India. Stripped of it protective husk, the raw corn ear is cooked on the coals of a fire. The result is a wonderful blackened ear of corn that is ready for a squeeze of lime that saw a brush of salt and chili on its way. The result is dark, ragged, and wonderfully tasty! It is eaten with your hands, napkins optional but it will leave a mess.
My father sent me a picture of a small street lady with a basket of corn and a small charcoal fire in a bucket. The scene was dirty, contaminated, and risky. While I cannot recall getting sick after eating the corn from her basket, I would think twice before eating it again. I would think twice, hesitate, and then dive in! Everything hot, touched by fire, and dipped in acid. Bad stuff will not survive, or so my premise goes.
I close my mind, remembering the taste, and visualizing myself on the street. Everything pivots on that moment in time. I realize that there is a lingering thread from the moment that I have not thought about for a long time. As I waited for her to prepare my corn, she would fan the flame with a bamboo weave. With each flick of the wrist, the flames would pop, small cinders flying and burning out with the blink of an eye. I knew then and now, the heat represented by those cinders was a purifying flame. My corn would come out ready for consumption without hesitation.
As I remember now, I understand David’s prayer. “Make them [my enemies] like cinders in a high wind, with God’s angel working the bellows.” (Psalm 35.5) I want the evil around me consumed and extinguished. It would to believe I could move – living, eating, and doing the stuff of life without hesitation. Wait, I see wisps disappearing. Time for action.