-Jon Foreman, “Love Isn’t Made”
the painful shifting of my understanding continues.
But on a lighter note,
my sister will be here for a visit in six days,
my dear friend will finally be home in ten days,
and I will maybe be able to think a bit more clearly
around two of the people who know me best.
I look forward to this immensely!
Out of these,
I will again rise.
This anointing mark of love
rests above my eyes.
of flame and smoke,
the soot of reality
into which the Lord spoke
a single Word.
And this Word is redemption
this Word is alive
this Word is unrelenting love
this Word is Christ.
We do not come to understand who we are by comparing ourselves to others, either by elevating our gifts above those of others or believing our gifts to be inferior. Neither our individual goodness nor our imperfections are comparable in the first place; the plane is so much more level and even than we believe it to be! All of these differences we find so divisive are of such little importance in view of eternity.
For so long, I have been an expert at identifying what I am not, and I realize with a heavy burden of grief that I am only just beginning to learn what and who I AM.
And I am tired of so adamantly NOT being so many things.
I have NOT been “religious.”
I have NOT been Catholic or Protestant.
I have NOT been “one of those” ethnocentric white Americans.
I have NOT been an idiot young adult.
I am tired of clinging to the NOTs and I am weary of what they imply — that I have long viewed my identity through the lens of cancerous comparison.
I just want to BE. I just want to stop resisting the possibility of being labeled something by others. I just want to put one foot in front of the other on this journey as a child of God, as a follower of Jesus, as a lover of people. I don’t want to base my identity in the divisions and boundaries that the world asks me to choose between, and I want to be free to exist both within and outside of them.
Because Jesus transcends them, doesn’t He? But doesn’t He also inhabit them? The very essence of God is BEING, freedom, love that knows no restraint; it meets those in the centerfold AND in the margins. Pharisees and lepers. Presidents and criminals. Literate intellectuals and the uneducated laborers. Jesus spans our list of divisions with His presence. He turns the hierarchy on its head and evens it out.
I just want to be like Him.
I am taking this journey of Lent with all of this in mind.
As I deal with the conflict echoing through into the present from the cries and outrage of the Reformation, as I deal with the aftermath of the microcosms of great schisms in my own past, as I try to determine whether or not I should pursue this important relationship or let it go, I suffer.
And I ask God to meet me here. I ask him to lead me to the places where I belong. I ask Him to be my Lord so that I no longer bow my heart before all of the things I am not.
and as I read it back to myself, it really scared me.
Looks like I’ve got a semi-permanent smile on.
even if just over Skype,
I will be so happy.
And my smile will not fade
Daddy God declares:
“In the End - every remaining tumor, every unhealed body, every unraised corpse, every eating disorder, every depressed thought, every panicked breath, every traumatic memory, every harsh word, every lie, every broken promise, every moment of stolen innocence, every suicide, every abortion, every murder, - every sin against Love will be set right.
Love will triumph.
All will be revealed.
All will be restored.
All will be redeemed.
All shall be well.”