IX. Sacred Love
Latisha smiled as Jesus greeted her. She knew it was Jesus and not one of the angels, though she was happy to talk to them, too. She recognized her Savior's voice.
"Good afternoon, Lord." She was smiling as she spoke; she always smiled when she talked to Heaven. Latisha knew absolutely that her Savior loved her, and the idea that she was living at a time when she could speak with Him directly never failed to excite her. Oh, there were disappointments - He refused to say just how soon the world would end and the Judgement would come, among other things - but Latisha never complained. She trusted her Lord absolutely. Whatever His plan might be, she knew she would be happy with it. Even if she didn't always understand His ways, the Lord knew what was best for her. "I was just wondering... would it be better to get the groceries this morning, while Joey's at school, or wait until after and take him with me?"
"Latisha..." There was a slight pause, and Latisha had the impression that her Savior was pursing his lips in a slightly puzzled fashion. "When you do your grocery shopping isn't any of My business. As far as Heaven is concerned, it... well, it doesn't matter. It doesn't affect your salvation. It doesn't have anything to do with how you treat other people, or with how you love your God."
"Yes, Lord," she replied. "But when do you think I should do it?"
As a devoted Christian, Latisha was committed to living her life in complete accordance with the will of Jesus, following God's Grand Plan for her life. In her youth, she'd spent an awful lot of time thinking and praying and reading the Bible, trying to figure out what she needed to do in order to follow the plan. For the last week, she'd been able to ask Jesus directly - and it had saved her so much time. All to His glory, of course; the time she saved, she put back into into praising His name and doing His work. So the idea that there were parts of her life that didn't require His guidance was... incomprehensible.
"I think you should use your own judgement, Latisha." Jesus' voice was warm, loving. There wasn't a hint of reproach anywhere in it. If the Redeemer had, hypothetically, ducked out of the normal flow of time to grind His exalted teeth in frustration for a couple of not-really-minutes, there was nothing to indicate it.
"I'll do my best, Lord," said Latisha. She was still waiting to hear when he wanted her to get the groceries. The Almighty did things in His own time, but He loved her and always had an answer for her.
"Get them this morning," said Jesus, finally. "The lines will be shorter."
"Thank you Lord," said Latisha. "Praise be to You. Use me as You would." Satisfied, she reached out and closed her Bible with a gentle, reverent movement.
"How many times was that?" asked the Metatron, who was standing outside the station where Jesus had just been speaking with Latisha.
"So far?" Jesus shook his head. "Three today. Eighteen, yesterday."
The Metatron shook its head. "That is not the sort of guidance we intended to give."
"You're telling me." Jesus looked around, wishing - yet again - that he could draw a deep breath. "I wanted followers, not puppets. People who would spread the good news, who would love God and love their neighbors as themselves. Not slaves to every little detail of My will. And these sorts of questions are so trivial... If Our resources were limited, they'd be a real problem. We'd never be able to get anything important done."
"Many of their questions are trivial," the Metatron agreed, "but have You looked at their requests?"
"Their...?" Jesus let his reply trail off, because as soon as He considered, He knew what the Metatron was referring to. Oh, no, he thought. Oh, no, no, no. This is not going to go over well at all...