Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Because of Hope I Am Alive

She walks with the gait of her own familiar walk
Sees what her eyes wish to see
Blinded to reality by her own vision,
She knows not she is living

From birth to death, we live and learn how to live, how to be who we think we are and who we are told we are...this living of life.

When did I decide that because life is hard living should be?

 It is day 4 of living the only possible way I am able...in pain, sleeping a lot, pacing some, with my head spinning and my jaw throbbing. Today as I write this I feel the effects continuing. For all sense and purposes I cancelled my normal life for this life. This living. I am not often sick so I whined a little, okay, a lot, which I hate in other people as well as myself. I wrote texts in the middle of the night when I couldn't sleep, expecting no answers. Just words going out into the night somehow helped me know I was still okay. If I have words, I am alive. I prayed for relief, which couldn't come soon enough, and I thought about this word, 'living'.

Every year in churches we are asked to revisit this week, this Holy week. We are taken back to when Jesus rode through the streets of Jerusalem on an untamed Colt. The crowd has laid palms before His feet, crying hosanna, which in Aramaic literally means 'please deliver us, I beg you to save'. I cried hosanna all weekend. And billions of people are crying 'hosanna' every day.

But salvation doesn't happen the way we want or expect. Jesus was not the Savior they were looking for. They wanted someone to take down the Roman government, bring justice and protect their rights and their land. They didn't understand He was not the Savior of their situations, but of their souls.

His life on earth was hard but He lived it well.

Jesus knew it was the last week on earth for Him. I can imagine what was going on inside His head. I'm sure His communion with His Father was constant and assuring, but He still had to endure the greatest suffering of all time as a mortal man.

He answered questions to those trying to deceive him about giving to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's. He spoke in parables and revealed the blindness of their heart only to teach a lesson. He cleared the temple and reprimanded the Pharisees. He took time to honor a widow and her meager, yet sacrificial offering. He shared a last meal with His disciples and then prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. And then the betrayal came as He was handed over to the authorities, which led Him to Calvary. His purpose was to exchange our soul's death for His life.

Though life was hard He kept serving, kept loving, kept teaching, kept living.

The words I've written about this season of Lent - rest, joy, quiet, happy, remember, consider, wound and broken are all living words. Hard at times to understand, they each represent our life. We live through them and in them. Each touches us, some for a moment, some for a lifetime, but what gives them their eternal value?

Sometimes we are just surviving.

We all know people who are in dire situations; the homeless, the outcast, the abandoned, the addict, the abused, and yes, the ones like me, who can't deal with 3 or 4 days of discomfort. It takes all we have just to process it all. And when we can make no sense of it, we survive on auto pilot. And we plug our prayers in and go about our day.

I am alive when everything tells me otherwise.

I am blinded by what I see. All around me there are things I can't fix, people I can't please, hearts I can't reach with or without my words or actions. So I translate it all to impossibilities and living becomes hard. But I have forgotten that life is in me. I am a living soul and I can live and walk through all of it. My soul will live even if things never get better.

I can't stop the hard things. I can turn my eyes to the living and walk through them, even in the times I feel useless, forgotten and cast aside. Christ has made me alive.

Because we breathe, we live, but Jesus offers the abundant life. The rich, extensive and plenteous life. That is a soul that is redeemed. That is what Easter is about.

Can I look with Christ's eyes and not my own? Can I pray for souls of people that they will see a risen Savior? Though broken by situations, can I realize the situations have an end, but a soul is eternal? Can I put away my familiar paths and walk a different walk? Can I remind myself daily that I am living because Christ is living in me?

So maybe living is trusting in a hope that lives within no matter what the situation is. The hope that is a secure anchor in Heb 6:19, and a promise of eternal life in Tit 1:2.

I hope that Easter means more to you this year than last year. I know it means more to me. I am grateful for the thoughts and understanding He allowed me to write down and share with you.

Happy Easter! He is risen! He is risen indeed!

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  1. "When did I decide that because life is hard, living should be?" Wow, that thought really resonates within me today. All of the "should be's" that I have set up for myself, overlook the realities that the HOPE of Jesus in me will bring about! Thank you for sharing these precious thoughts today!

    1. Bettie, the only thing we should be is who we are. That is where God meets us and loves us and gently transforms us. I am such a late learner of this. I don't want to strive, I want to thrive! Blessings to you!

    2. Bettie, the only thing we should be is who we are. That is where God meets us and loves us and gently transforms us. I am such a late learner of this. I don't want to strive, I want to thrive! Blessings to you!

  2. Mary,
    What a challenging time you are having, but still you are living, hoping and trusting that God will provide the relief that you so desire. Praying that for you friend! And as we contemplate the suffering of Christ this week, we know that a new life and resurrection was on the way, even in the midst of darkness. So glad you shared your thoughts with us!

    1. Thanks for visiting Valerie. God is so faithful to take me through things He wants me to write about. He knows how to bring His perspective into view. Blessings to you!

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