In the Name of the Father 4: Sasquatch Part 2

We were walking in the street by Sasquatch’s house late at night on a Friday.

“I don’t know about you but this was how my friends and I used to do it,” he said. “Just walk the road. Right down the middle of the street in the city. You get out of the way of the cars, but we didn’t stay on the sidewalk. This was it right here.”

“Yeah, in Waynesville there are not a lot of sidewalks anyway. This was how we did it, too.” And there was a certain fuck you to it. A kind of dangerous way to the feeling of walking on the street itself. If I had stayed in Milwaukee maybe the same thing. We were capturing a kind of punk attitude, a kind of fuck off, and this was the perfect time to talk about God.

Don’t ask me why. Maybe a bit of Shadow came to the front to talk about it. Maybe a little Guardian needed to say a few things. It was a subject Adam was beginning to get hopeless about since Sasquatch had brought the topic up a few months ago with his presumptuous book and the way he had given it to me. I have no idea what brought us to the point where we were ready to talk, but it was Servant who came out that night. It was Servant who needed to feel the presence of God and tell his story.

The conversation made its way to The Horn Blower and the day we had seen the Arch Angel Gabriel. To this, Sasquatch had nothing to say. He did not deny that it happened, nor did he get excited about it. I had just told a Christian that I had seen an angel, not only an angel but one of the angels, and that man did not react at all. I can’t tell you what he thought of it, but I have drawn some conclusions and you will hear them at the end of the night. For now, I will just say this guy did not flinch, ask any questions, or make any statements. He took the Gabriel experience on the chin.

He had nothing to add, so we walked in silence for a long time. We were walking a circuit around his neighborhood and after one entire circle he said, “How do you feel about talking to God? Do you pray?”

“I don’t. Anything I would say would be either a thank you, which he knows I am grateful, or a request, which I think is pretty pointless.”

“Please God, forgive him his blasphemy,” he said with a laugh.

I laughed, too. “No, think about it. God has will. He has a plan to enact and He knows what is best for Him. When I was a teenage kid, I prayed that I would be a famous writer by the age of twenty-two. I prayed that I would marry Mary. Well neither of those things happened, and that is for the best.”

“You are glad you did not become a famous writer when you were twenty-two?”

“Yeah, I mean, I have a pretty thick set up right now. Nine books in and they are waiting. When it comes time to publish, I will have a fully functioning world for them to look at. I’m pretty set once I am ready.”

“Well the Bible tells us to thank God for the blessings He gives,” Sasquatch said. He had the Bible verse on hand. I won’t look it up but I assume he was not bullshitting me.

“I don’t think God is that arrogant.”

Silence.

“What could you mean by that?”

“Well I give my kid a present, I see he loves it, and he runs off to play with it. I don’t care if he thanks me or not,” I said. “I don’t need that.”

“But when we gave Tobin his gift at his party, he thanked us.”

“Yeah, and you are not his father. When I get gifts from other people, I thank them every time. They are not my father. The citizens of the world give you gifts and they get thanks. But your Heavenly Father gives you a gift, how are you supposed to even know at the time?”

“What?” he said. He was a bit off balance.

“Well we get people in our lives, like you for instance. I didn’t know when I met you if you were a blessing or not. I didn’t know whether I should thank God or curse Him when you showed up.”

“Have you thanked Him yet?”

“No.”

“Why not now?” he said. “Why not thank Him for my friendship right now?”

“He already knows I am thankful.”

“So tell Him.”

“I do, with my actions. Every time I help you out with your art, or give you advice or am there for you, I am thanking God for your friendship. Does He want the words? Or does He want to see my gratefulness in my actions?”

He had nothing to say to that. But a few minutes more he said, “What about other things, not the thanks, but the asking? Why not ask God for a publishing deal?”

“In my mind there is only one pure prayer you can say to God.”

“Well that would be the Lord’s Prayer.”

“Outdated.”

I heard his gasp but he kept it as quiet as possible. “Outdated.”

“Outdated,” I said. “The only pure prayer left in this world is ‘God, Your will be done.’ He doesn’t really need that either.”

“Let’s walk away from prayer for a minute,” he said.

But I was in now. I needed to talk, needed to talk about prayer. See, I was getting bits of hope as we went on, getting little messages from God that maybe I might be able to find my way back to some sort of understanding. So I interrupted him with, “I spoke to God once. Had an entire conversation with him.”

“Want to tell me about it?”

And I did. I had never told any living soul about this conversation, and now I felt ready. I felt as if I could say this outloud for the first time.

First I will tell you the story, then I will tell you Sasquatch’s reaction.


I was about fourteen. Might have been fifteen. Harmony Baptist was having a revival. For those of you who do not know what that is, a revival is when a church starts to get a little stagnant, the preacher will invite a revival preacher to come and give a weeklong sermon series that charges up the church again and relights everyone’s fire for the Lord. One of these was coming to Harmony and my family went.

Now the sermons are meant to enflame the congregants, so it is pretty fiery, and about fifteen minutes in, this guy starts to describe what it will be like on Judgment Day to be standing in the line that is going to Heaven and looking at loved ones in the line going to Hell. The horror of the moment was real, the way my loved ones would be pulling and fighting to get to my line as I wept, because I knew what they were going into. I thought about it, then I thought about myself.

What if I was not going to heaven? What if by some misinterpretation of the Bible I was headed to hell? The Baptists believe that one must only accept Jesus’s sacrifice as truth, admit they are a sinner and ask for Christ’s forgiveness. Then they must be baptized and they are “Saved.” The rest of their life is spent trying to walk in Jesus’s footsteps and they are assured a place in Heaven. It is a done deal. No matter what you do for the rest of your life, you are in. You are “Saved” and it is forever.

That always sounded like bullshit to me. One “well yeah, of course you’re my guy. Sorry for the shit by the way. We good?” And you are in. Forever. That sounded like nonsense. So a question came to me clear and heavy.

“How do I avoid going to Hell?” I spoke it in my head. Suddenly the church is fading. The light of God is on me and I know the words that will be spoken next will be Jesus. But when they were spoken, they were God. Not Jesus at all.

How I knew the difference, I don’t know. I had been taught that we could only talk to Jesus, that God was not available to us. I had been taught that only through Christ could we find our way to God. That all messages had to go through Jesus. So when I heard what was clearly God, I felt calm. I felt loved, but still confused.

“It’s not about that,” He said.

I went home. I went to bed without sleeping. I drifted through school, and after dinner we went back to the church. The preacher got started again and I found myself in that light again.

“How do I avoid Hell?” I said.

God’s voice again in my head. “It’s not about that.”

“What is it about?” I asked.

“Jesus.”


At this point in the story, I am weeping. I can barely get my words out, and Sasquatch and I are still walking circles around the neighborhood. I do not know how late it is. Usually our nights went from 8 to midnight, sometimes one, but it could have been four in the morning for all I knew. I heard him say nothing. The night sang with crickets and tree frogs and on I went, trying capture my second true holy experience.


Didn’t sleep much and when I did, I had dreams of light and white. I woke, made it to school by a hair, walked all the way through school and after an early dinner I am back at the church. The preacher is back into the flames of his brimstone sermon and I feel God’s light again.

“How do I avoid Hell?”

“It’s not about that.”

“What is it about?”

“Jesus.”

“I can’t feel Jesus and I don’t understand him. None of what they say about him makes any sense. I don’t know Jesus.”

“What is Jesus?” The Lord says.

I’m in bed and not sleeping. I stare up at the ceiling. Think to go to the Bible but I never found it useful. It is too deeply encoded, too much ‘this says this but means that,’ for me to ever break the cypher. I didn’t know how to pray anymore, so I just kept staring and thinking about what Jesus was.

Tear away everything we are taught of him. I knew I couldn’t just come back with a cardboard answer. This was the most important conversation I would ever have. I needed to really search for an answer.

The next day I missed the bus on purpose. I walked to school which was about five miles and the entire way I talked to myself. I played back every story I had about Jesus until I figured out what I would say.

Back at church and the sermon begins. I feel God’s light and I start to speak.

“How do I avoid Hell?”

“It’s not about that,” God said.

“What is it about?”

“Jesus.”

“I can’t feel Jesus and I don’t understand him. None of what they say about him makes any sense. I don’t know Jesus,” I said. Still there was a plea in my voice.

“What is Jesus?”

“Jesus is a teacher,” I said. I hoped that was the answer God might be looking for. I didn’t want to say my Savior because that was too watery and vague. I needed to boil it all down into his primary job, and I thought teaching was it.

“What did Jesus teach?” God asked.


I stopped to catch my breath outside Sasquatch’s house. I was not tired. I was not winded. I was emotionally exhausted. It was taking every bit of my inner strength to tell this story. Every bit of myself to capture what my conversation with God had been like.

He stopped beside me and laid a hand on my shoulder.

I waited there, comforted by his hand, before I wiped my eyes and continued on.


Night with little or no sleep. And I am walking a daze now. I am barely aware of anything around me. I fall asleep in a few classes. Take a nap at lunch under a set of stairs. And then bus, home, dinner, and I am back in front of the Lord. I do not have an answer for Him and I am hoping that I might get one. This is day six of the revival. This is the last day this preacher will be here. This is the last night I feel I have to talk to God. So with only questions and no true answers yet, I go back into Harmony to talk to God again.

“How do I avoid Hell?”

“It’s not about that.”

“What is it about?”

“Jesus.”

“I can’t feel Jesus and I don’t understand him. None of what they say about him makes any sense. I don’t know Jesus.”

“What is Jesus?”

“Jesus is a teacher.”

“What did he teach the world?”

Suddenly as if it had been born in my soul long ago and was finally ready to boil up it comes to me. “Jesus taught love.”

“Love your fellow man,” God said. “That is what it is all about.”


By the time the story was done, I felt wrung out. I felt as if I had just made the most arduous journey I had ever made. I was standing in front of Sasquatch’s house, his living room lights pouring into the dark night through the windows. I leaned against my car feeling as if I had just been given an intense chore and had completed it.

I looked up at Sasquatch for any reply, knowing my story must have touched him.

“Well, did you ask it any questions?” he asked.

“What do you mean?”

“The voice. Did you ask it any questions? To verify it was God?”

“No. I know it was God. I felt his presence in my body and in that church. I know it was God as well as I know I love my wife.”

“Well if you do not question the voices in our head, they could be anyone. You were probably talking to a demon to be honest.”

Everything ran out of me. All of the hope, the understanding. All the love the story had brought up in me. All the love of God I had felt when telling it. I had for just a tiny while felt clean, but when Sasquatch said that it was probably a demon, everything dropped.

He started talking about how Jesus died for our sins and he spoke about the Cup of Wrath, and any message I hear that does not tell about those things is not real.

He hugged me. Said it had been a fun night and sent me home.

I had finally told someone about my conversation with God. And now I had to wonder if it was really a demon that had spoken to me.

All because of Sasquatch.

Because evidently Sasquatch knows the voice of God better than someone who has heard it.


This chapter is from Reality of the Unreal Mind, Vol. 3: The Keep.

Vol. 1: Teardrop Road is available now on Amazon.

One thought on “In the Name of the Father 4: Sasquatch Part 2

  1. I sat under a canopy of trees one morning, the sunlight filtering through the leaves offering the purest light I have ever seen. My body became connected with the earth and as our energies ran together I became one with all below and above, everything that ever was and ever will be were all connected. I asked if what I was feeling was God and the answer was “it is love, God is every thing that has and will ever be and the thing that binds it all together is pure love”. I think some people call it enlightenment, some nirvana, but that experience under that tree showed me God, the universe and the meaning of life. A simple message I had over complicated my whole life. The point of everything is simply to be and to connect and notice that you have.
    I’m very much enjoying reading your stories Jesse, all of us do.
    Suzi

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