Bind up these broken bones
Mercy bend and breathe me back to life
But not before You show me how to die
Oh, not before You show me how to die
So let me go like a leaf upon the water
Let me brave the wild currents flowing to the sea
And I will disappear into a deeper beauty
But for now just stay with me
God, for now just stay with me
-Show Me by Audrey Assad
Sept. 17, 2011 -- And in spite of ALL that happened that day, I quietly, and in my own way, celebrated 11 years to the day I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord & Savior.
I thank God for the 11 years of allowing me to "journey" as many others would say. It's been an interesting 11 years so far. Filled with for the most part, of me trying to figure out for myself where to go next, and forgetting that I have a guide and map with me and that I should not be afraid to ask. Sometimes it's the being too afraid to know where I will go next that's keeping me from asking, sometimes it's just sheer disobedience and trying to do things 'my' way. I thank God for His patience and His love and for how it abounds.
I guess I just want to share what God has taught me specifically that day. And I know that lesson is most special not only because of the circumstances surrounding that day, but more importantly because of the object of the lesson itself.
That day, two unexpected things happened. Though not directly to me, but they happened in my circle, to which I'm not sure with as to the gravity of the influence of the experiences on me. So as to protect the privacy of those people involved, I will not divulge any names or references. But what I will tell you is the theme that ties both experiences together: suffering and loss.
One physical, the other relational. But both being unmistakably painful, albeit real.
The weekend went by without much processing on my part, and it is only now that i'm trying to pick up after what happened, all the while reminding myself of something that Socrates (correct me if i'm wrong) said, that the unexamined life is not worth living.
And so that is what I did, examine myself first in light of what happened, and next in light of how I should respond to what happened.
I thank God that all the more now, I could really say that it is His presence that has made all the difference in the world for me when it comes to the two things that happened. And though some might argue as to how we can see God's presence in pain and in suffering, I think I will let you find out that one for yourself, as no amount of argument can counter the argument of actual experience.
And so that's what I'm doing now, speaking from experience, maybe not necessarily first hand, as I mentioned that I wasn't directly involved, but maybe more of experience as part of the ripple that was created by the events that transpired.
"But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light."
I have encountered Ephesians 5 many times before in the past, but this would really be the first time that I was able to see it for myself, especially this part right here of verse 13. My understanding of this verse is now completely changed. And indeed everything that happens, even probably those painful things that we experience, as they fall under the light of Christ, each experience becomes a light upon which other people are ministered to and where we can learn and be guided by.
And I guess that is my takeaway from what happened over the weekend. I am firstly reminded that life is just fleeting, and that we are just but passing by in this world. And that we really need to start being more intentional with how we live our lives, because things can change in a matter of seconds to which our lives as we know it would cease to exist.
Secondly, that pain and suffering are all but part of this world we are living in. And it's not just being familiar with them, but knowing and trusting that behind coupled with every pain is purpose.
And lastly, that God is still sovereign. I thank God for that, now more than ever, He has kept the hope for the best to come alive in my heart and in me.
May we all bask in the unmistakable light that is the presence of Christ Jesus in all of us!
“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”
-C.S. Lewis (Is Theology Poetry?, 1945)
Labels: Audrey Assad, death, hope, life, loss, love, pain, purpose, relationships, suffering