Tag Archives: spirituality

Sacrifice

8 Mar

Lately, I’ve been wondering about the desire to share my injuries.  Why, when I do something stupid and hurt myself in the park, do I feel the need to share the image of my broken face with the world?  Why do the biographies of skaters often include a list of the injuries they suffered in the park?  Why do derby skaters post pictures of their injuries and eagerly search the images of other, similar injuries?  Are we all so morbidly obsessed?

But perhaps it is not a morbid obsession.  Perhaps this too is holy.  Like Paul of Tarsus giving his body to God, we give ours to the park.  Our sacrifice.  Scars and bumps and bruises become physical reminders of all we give for our love.  They become badges of honor, not to the injury itself, but to the commitment and sacrifice the injuries represent.

Tony Hawk relates a story about how he knocked himself unconscious in a skatepark, and his first thought upon regaining consciousness was a realization that he would never stop skating, regardless of what it did to his body.  Often, I roll over in the middle of the night, and my bruised hips or shoulders cause me to wake up gasping in pain.  But this pain almost always makes me smile.  I do not like the pain, any more than Paul of Tarsus liked being whipped or stoned or shipwrecked, however, I love what it represents.  It represents my love of skating, a love that exceeds the love of self, a love so overwhelming that even the destruction of my physical body could not diminish it.

If I die in a skatepark, rejoice for me.

So here, then, are some words on sacrifice from the Bible.  I have rearranged and changed them slightly, to fit my purposes.

Are they skaters?

I am more;

In labors more abundant,

in stripes above measure,

in jail more frequent,

in deaths oft.

Twice was my consciousness taken,

oft was I stoned,

many strandings I’ve suffered,

many nights slept I, as a dog upon the floor;

In journeyings often,

in perils of waters,

in perils of robbers,

in perils by mine own countrymen,

in perils by the heathen,

in perils in the city,

in perils in the wilderness,

in perils in the sea,

in perils among false brethren;

In weariness and painfulness,

in watchings often,

in hunger and thirst,

in fastings often,

in cold and nakedness.

If I must needs glory,

I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.