Day 40…..it’s hard to believe, isn’t it? For many weeks now we’ve met here to reflect on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, and what that means for us today. I’ve shared things from the ridiculous to the intensely personal and it is my hope that somewhere in all those many words you found a deeper connection to God in whatever way you need.
Today is the day before the resurrection. What was it like for Jesus on this pre-resurrection day? The Bible makes reference to him defeating death and I’ve always envisioned some sort of epic battle, where Jesus emerges the victor. Whether literal or not, a battle was indeed won during his time in the tomb, and when we sing our Alleluias in the morning, it will be out of honor and gratitude to the one who did for us what we couldn’t do for ourselves. Amazing grace….amazing sacrifice…..amazing love!
As for myself, it’s hard to put into words what these 40 days have meant to me. I know it was purely God’s leading that convinced me to write this blog at such a painful and vulnerable time in my life. (I described it to a friend as feeling like I was standing in the middle of the road each night in my underwear!) But God knew I desperately needed something to focus on even as the storm raged. When I started 40 days ago, I was barely praying….barely allowing myself to share my grief with even God. He knew I needed a nudge to head me in the right direction, and he also knows I can’t write without searching my heart for truth….
This I do know; I am….
- 40 days stronger
- 40 days further down the road of healing
- 40 days more honest about my faith (and my utter reliance on God)
- 40 days full of gratitude for not having to walk these 40 days alone….
There have been days where just making it through work and getting home in one piece felt like my greatest achievement, then I’d sit down at the computer and check the “stats” page (that tells me how many people have popped in to the site, and also what they’ve read) and I continued to be touched that there were people who showed up to be a part of this 40 days of Lent with me! Not only surprised, but very, very grateful. You have allowed me to vent, to rage, to laugh, to remember and to feel……thank you just isn’t big enough.
So tonight, on the Eve of Easter, I dedicate all of these 40 days of writing to you, who have held my hand and touched my heart so deeply. If not for the grace of God through his son, there would be no hope. But because He lives, I know there’s life yet for me – for us all!
“How excellent are your ways, O God! You cause us to lie down in peace because we know you hold our future and share our grief. Thank you, Jesus, for your life and example. Thank you for not giving up, even when it was frustrating and hard, and seemed like we would never get it right. Thank you for loving us with this super-love that is so hard for us to understand and for forgiving us over and over again – we want to be like you! Please continue to lead and guide us as we complete the work you have for us on earth – the hardest being to love others the way you love us. Help us change the world with that love. We want to be faithful! We want to honor you with extravagant faith! Then, when our work is done, what a party we’ll have with you and those we love in the place where there will be no more sorrow and no more loss. We can’t wait for that day! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”
I know it’s a bit premature, but since this is the end of our journey together, let me be the first to proclaim……. “He is risen!” <3