Sometimes life can be lonely. There is someone I deeply love who is terminally ill right now. He is on hospice and is alone. All weekend I felt as though I was walking through water because I was heavy with emotions for him.
I have another friend who just lost everything because of his choice to follow Christ. He still has his wife and children healthy, but everything else is starting fresh. A new definition of family. A new definition of work. A new definition of life.
I cannot even tell you how many of us feel like we are at yet another fork in the road, another life changing decision that feels as heavy as the moon yet as casual as a cup of coffee. Life doesn't slow for any of this. Life continues on and God calls us forward.
Yesterday there was a tornado less than two blocks from our house. Trees are down everywhere. Thankfully we are all safe, but you can see the devastation. Ezra told Nikki that it is strange how people just seem to be going about their lives with the debris all around. I think there are many of us who live this way, thinking it is strange how many speed past the debris of our lives.
A few days ago we visited The Avenue church on the campus of the U of L. The pastor was reminding us of how often God works by invitation and then challenge.we are invited near to Him, but then challenged to a deeper faith. It is in this place that we often feel loneliness.
After church I was trading football cards with Durant. I asked him if he ever traded cards with Jesus. I though it was funny, but the answer was serious. "He is in the room dad, but I can't see him. I don't know if he has cards, but he made the players." My son is a genius.
What Durant said is what we often feel. We are invited into this relationship that changes us, yet we can't see. It is by faith because God says so, but our flesh screams for it to be by sight. After being invited to live deeper with Christ we are left looking around for who else is near. After all, Jesus is in the room but we can't see Him. Many of us our living in this place. We know that Jesus is who He said He is, yet we are looking around us and feeling isolated in the calling we are given. We can't see how the pieces fall together so we are scared that they won't. We are tired of pain hurting, and we want relief. Not just for us, but for those we love. Can't the food just get to the hungry? Can't the cure reach the sick? Can't His peace reached the frightened and anxious?
My kids are growing up very quickly. It seems like I blink and someone outgrew their shoes, their clothes, or their old toys. There is one thing that no one has outgrown yet. Sometimes the darkness of night will scare one of the kids. Maybe a test keeps them awake. Maybe they keep thinking of a friend they miss, or a dream that they had. Whenever that happens they do what comes naturally, they come find us. If it is early we may be in the living room. If it is late, we are in our room. Either way they don't care, they come find us. Somehow our queen bed can manage to fit a few extras kings and a little princess when need be. Every now and then I have to watch my step over bodies in the morning as I go to get ready. I guess they know where to turn to be safe.
I don't know where you are as you read this. I don't have the answers to the why questions of life. All I know is often I am tired, yet I am learning to find rest. We are invited to the throne of grace on purpose. It's there that we lay down our lives, and quite possibly lay to rest, knowing we are safe and no longer alone. He is our remedy. I am one grateful man.
Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.