The phrase, the backside of Monday, has been rattling around my head in competition with other thoughts for several days. I'd like to tell you it's an odd thing; but the fact is, it's how my brain works. It's often the result of something I've read in scripture, or something I believe the Lord is impressing. I can just as easily be random musings.
Sometimes I'm able to orchestrate the rattling sounds into something melodious. At other times no such orchestration is to be had, and I am left to wonder what they - the rattles - mean, or where they might lead. Typically I jot them down in my hand-written journal; then set about forgetting them, or waiting for clarity, or both.
So what do I make of this one, this enigmatic backside thing?
Until today I didn't have a clue. But now I've gotten ahead of myself, so let's back up some (which takes us to the backside).
In recent days someone shared with me something that occurred many years ago; something hurtful I knew absolutely nothing about, but should have. It hit my gut like a head-on collision with reality, and for hours - even days - I lived in a soup of guilt, unsure about what, if anything, to do with the information.
It was plainly clear to me that I had been remiss - even irresponsible - in how I'd dealt with (or, rather NOT dealt with) something back there. My equilibrium was now as rattled as the rattles.
Fretful ... Sad... Ashamed... Stymied... Sorry... On-and-on I swam, doing both breaststroke & backstroke in that soup of guilt.
Then it began: The backside of Monday.
Silly 'ole phrase.
Not so fast, Kathleen!
What I've come to see - concluded - is that all my guilt & regret resides in the backside of Monday. It's the abode of past. It's on the backside, which means it is often obscure, or dark, or without the light of day. It's also the place I go when I allow what was to rob me of the joy of what is.
Then there's Monday - typically representative of the new work week - where, in this telling, my flesh rushes when preparing to impress both God & man. All the while I'm engaged in a works-oriented cleansing, I vascillate between beating myself up and making excuses.
Alas, the backside of Monday always & eventually leaves me feeling small, like a child in a foggy forest.
Best I chart my course along a track that runs on the frontside of dawn.
Well, at least the rattle's silenced for now. It's best I chart my course along a track that runs along the frontside of dawn.
For you became sorrowful as God intended
and so were not harmed in any way by us.
Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads
to salvation and leaves no regret,
but worldly sorrow brings death.
See what this godly sorrow has produced in you:
what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourselves,
what indignation, what alarm, what longing,
what concern, what readiness to see justice done.
At every point you have proved yourselves
to be innocent in this matter.
2 Corinthians 7:9-11
Where morning dawns and evening fades,
You call forth songs of joy.
P.S. Let me be clear: I'm all for sincere repentance. I also subscribe to the practical wisdom of "beginning with the end in mind" when it comes to making choices; and to personal accountability. But paddling around in the soup of guilt is none of these.