Come with me to the Himalayas, mate. You don’t need all that drugs and drunkenness and clubbing, infectious debt and dirty living. Come on, let’s get into training. We’re going to God’s Kingdom on earth to find ourselves amongst the biggest creatures inhabiting the planet. We’re going to breathe in the clean air and the massive presence of something outside ourselves that doesn’t depend on you or me for its existence; and who in their right mind would argue with that?
We’re going to get lost in pure snow and gasp in astonishment at beauty and power singing in a deep voice to a soul that like a lamb hears its mother in the distance and cries and runs, screaming: ‘all I want is to live’.
Man, we’ll sweat. At the end of every day we’ll ache with trekking. We won’t give Sydney or Melbourne or any other city a single thought. We’ll talk about when you and I were growing up in Wollongong and I was your best mate, before things started to go wrong.
O sweet God of mercy, what went wrong?
Maybe we won’t talk. Maybe we’re not ready for that. First we’ve got to get into the habit of loving each other in each other’s presence, and build up a repertoire of topics and a habit of discussing them.
We’ll ask the God of hunger to renew our friendship. Like the Jesus character in the Gibson movie, ‘The Passion of the Christ’, with his face all busted with blood and wounds and such agony that has carved itself into his skin, and his soul, no doubt. And he meets his mother, and like a little boy he calls her ‘Mother’, and he can’t wait to tell her his news: “Mother,” he whispers, “I have made all things new.”
Do you hear me, mate? Don’t turn away. We’ll go trekking in the Himalayas together. It’ll be fun.