Why Suffering Matters
Just this past weekend, we, as a collective body of Christ, commemorated Good Friday and celebrated Resurrection Sunday. We reflected back on the suffering and victory of Jesus from the cross to the grave. We raised our hands in praise over the footprints that exited the tomb!
Also, this weekend, masses of people walked through their own suffering. From suicide bombers to menacing tornadoes to hopeless diagnoses, many…many people suffered. And, no doubt, many cried out to God for freedom, for safety, for healing.
A Prayer: Guard Their Hearts
Their hearts are so soft, so open and so trusting. But they are dirty, already. From the moment of birth, deep in their hearts, a seed of pride began to grow. And it grows more and more demanding every day. It threatens, even now, to spread and latch itself on to every inclination, every moment, and every vein. Sins’ roots sprout evil thoughts, immorality, lust, envy, coveting, foolishness, and hatred.
This is how they were born. This is how I was born. This is the battle of the heart – it starts here. Inside of each of them, each of us. For out of natural inclinations of the heart, they are defiled.
There’s a tree at the end of our street flaunting itself, trumpeting its beauty and shouting “look at me! Stop and stare and take me in…all in!” Bright pink blooms on ever branch and twig form a canopy of little girl dreams and fairy tale stories.
The tree so full it can’t contain itself has blanketed the ground beneath with a rug of soft blush petals. I want to roll around in it, but since it’s not my tree or my yard I have settled on taking pictures.
As a mom I have made some trades. I have traded slacks for yoga pants and hairdressers for ponytails. I have written in the past about how this has changed me spiritually... today I'll go in a slightly different direction.
What follows is a list of some of the trades I've made as I become more mom and less... whatever I was before.
I am crushed today, under the weight of disappointments. I am crushed, today, under the weight of loneliness. I am crushed, today, under the weight of my mistakes. I am crushed, today, under the weight of tomorrow.
And I am scared. I am not scared of the future, specifically, but I am afraid that what I have done to today will mar our tomorrow. Today was all I had and I didn’t do it very well. I could feel pieces of me breaking today. Pieces have been breaking for a while but, in the past, it has been pleasant, like the falling away of chains. However, the pieces that broke today were not meant to fall – at least I don’t think so.
I found myself measuring – my weight, my popularity, my meaning, my worth, my beauty, my importance, my self – and I came up short every time. Came up short to what, though? Expectations? Yeah, that’s probably it.
Don’t we all come up short of our expectations – we trip and fall into the shadows of misguided worth?
My dear, dear girls, this is for you…
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