Death < Christ

March 30, 2013

I remember the Tuesday evening my mother put me in her lap and told me dad had died. I don’t remember anything else about that day other than hearing those haunting words as I watched my young brother roll his toy cars on my bedroom floor.
The phone call I received that Sunday night ten years later informing me of my mother’s accident is quiet clear, as well. It took a while for those words to sink in as I tried to discount the call. It couldn’t be real.
What now? What happens next?
There’s not much I remember about the days and weeks after losing dad. I was a child. I faintly remember the memorial in KY and a few days later, the funeral in Arkansas.
But my mother’s funeral is clearer. Ten years to the day after dad’s, that feeling of nausea that overtook me during the service and how my uncle came to sit next to me comes to mind every time I think of that January 1st. The looks of pity from those passing by and the eerie quietness at the grave-site were all too familiar, even if separated by a decade.
Utter despair sets in when you can’t fully process what you just went through and have no idea of what will happen next. Breathing takes effort. The mind goes into shock. Your whole life changes.
Darkness sets in and makes camp and you’re left desperately wanting to know what happens next but oh so terrified of when that might come.  
I can only imagine what the disciples went through but it had to be a little like that Tuesday and Sunday night. One moment, they were living a dream. Words of light had been spoken, the sick had been healed, and the dead had been raised. It was hard to believe everything they had witnessed but they were trying.
They loved him. They trusted him. They had big dreams for what he would do, not only for them but for their entire nation. He would save them. He would deliver Israel. He would, he could. But then he died.
It wasn’t supposed to happen this way. Right?  He was young, healthy, and powerful. With him, they were safe. But last night, he left them in a dark and dangerous place.
All of us have lived through those Saturdays wondering how could this happen and how will we ever get through. Maybe it was a phone call, diagnosis, or moment that took your breath and threatened to take your faith away, too.
Hope is nowhere to be found. Confusion and a sense of abandonment rule.

When darkness is all you can see, hold on for tomorrow is coming. And with it will come healing, hope, and joy.

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