The last two weeks have been a roller coaster of emotion. I’ve been so up and down that my moods have just gone haywire. I started crying randomly during our Easter service because we had to sit in the lobby due to a packed service and the fact that we arrived right before it began. It was, of course, our fault. I took too long getting ready, we had to wrestle the dog into the crate, and so on. But I felt cheated out of my Easter experience. It is my very favorite Sunday (or in our case, Saturday) of the year and I felt like I didn’t get to fully participate in the service. And then during the sermon everything hit me. The craziness of the last two weeks, watching the service on a TV screen, the death and resurrection of Jesus (which, on a good day, is enough to make me teary). I knew I was being ridiculous, but I just felt so overwhelmed.
I’ve been on a Shauna Niequist kick lately. It began when I read Bread and Wine and loved it. Bonnie got me Bittersweet for my birthday, and I might have loved that even more. In it she talks about the Christian life bearing a pattern of death and new life. She talked about looking at her own life and places that she could see it. The death of a dream, the death of a job, of the life you thought you were called to live. But if you look for it, something new and beautiful springs up in it’s place. Death and new life.
Two weeks ago my grampy died. My dad called on a Saturday morning after a particularly bad night shift at work to let me know Grampy had gone home. Corey and I traveled to Pennsylvania for the viewing and funeral. It was comforting to be with my family, but a sadness hung in the air even though we rejoiced that Grampy was with Jesus. My grammy (who was married to my grampy for 68 years before she died) passed away 4 years ago. Grampy’s death seemed to carry such a finality with it. No more grandparents on my dad’s side. Standing at Grampy’s funeral I shook that feeling, reminding myself that in Christ, after death we are promised life….life abundant. I saw it there in my grampy’s testimony, death and new life.
Two days after the funeral i missed call from our adoption agency. When I called back our coordinator told me that we had received the referral for our little girl. I cried again. While still mourning the passing of my grandfather, we would start preparing for the arrival of our daughter. Death and new life.
I’m seeing it all around me even now as the cold of winter gives way to a season of renewal. Winter’s death is swallowed up in the new life of spring.
As I worshiped in church last night I was reminded of the ultimate death and new life for me. The death of Jesus on the cross, once and for all, to purchase life for anyone who believes in him.
Are you seeing the pattern in your life? I promise you will once you start looking for it.
Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. ~Isaiah 43:19
Happy Easter, friends. He is risen indeed!