It’s been one of those seasons – one like I’m sure you’ve seen. When the wind only seems to blow cold and the need for spring burns in your soul. Yes, a soul spring is what I need… A warming.
I make plans, make lists, schedule and coordinate. I love order. And then God breaths in and blows out a mighty wind across my perfectly laid plans like a storm ripping up a freshly planted crop. The crop held hope for tomorrow. But God has different plans for today.
In the moments of each day, the little pieces of order are turned on their heads and then the phone rings. Something else. Someone else. Another blow of God’s divine breathing over the crop. But this time, despair isn’t my companion.
I keep waiting, almost expecting the familiar friend called fear to steal my gaze, but I can’t help but hear, in the divine breathe, “I am good.” He is good. And He knows good. And He can’t help but do good. Good is His nature. He is love. He is good.
The soul spring is coming, I know it. And I rest in the comfort that God knows. As I make more plans, revised plans, for a family reunion of sorts around the solemnity and grief of death, He ministers to me.
Have you felt that? Do you have the experiences of blow after blow, yet all the while you sense the goodness in that breath?
I left my sweet and sick little family for two nights to head to my hometown, yes the actual place I was born. Airports aren’t fun, but I had decided that I would use my time wisely, since all my other plans had been changed.
But, again, God had an agenda. The Christian life often looks like that. Ministry comes in unexpected places and unexpected times. It seems that nearly every time Jesus sat to rest or turned to escape the crowds, more people were there and He met them and chose to minister.
I met Brenda. We both needed to charge our phones. Of course, had they both been fully charged and functional, we probably would have missed each other – our noses pointed to the shiny screen.
But we saw each other. A third stranger, unknowingly, brought us together by leaving a tender note written inside a pink diary where we sat. Also inside was a chronicling of someone’s end. A name – a mom – and the dates she entered the hospital, then hospice, then death.
As I talked to Brenda, I learned where she was heading. Her flight would take her to her grandson’s side for, what was likely to be, the last time. A young man who had suffered since birth was ready to go home to his Savior. She, while saying she was ready to let him go, couldn’t contain the emotion running down her face. Her eyes leaked without her control, fresh from the loss of her own mother only a week before.
Death. It seemed everywhere. She held my hands while we talked. And then she prayed. Her voice lifting up to Jesus in such glory and admiration and love for her Lord. In the midst of her upturned plans, she too rejoiced.
Three strangers unified in suffering, sadness, and in hope. Hope. That’s it isn’t it? That’s what brings our soul spring. That’s where strength comes when all our plans unravel. There is hope!
What should differentiate us from those around us, as believers in Christ, is our hope. Yes, we know it’s our love, but also our hope. Don’t you think?
Because death lies, you see. Death is not the end. Suffering isn’t final.
The grave does not have the last word. Glory to God, He does! And so, we have a hope that won’t let go. No more death, no more disease, no more pain, no more tears. And death falls silent. And only this remains: Glory everlasting, Light piercing the darkness.
"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
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