Two weeks ago we got good news - Peter was offered a job that he's been hoping for since October. Same company, different department, and as an added bonus, he no longer has to wear a polyester uniform. It was something we had been praying about and talking over and hoping would happen, but within minutes of being offered the job, he was stopped in the hallway by a co-worker who poured out a story of such sadness and hopelessness, that any joy over the new job just melted away. It put life in an eternal perspective.
Since that time, it has felt like the stream of brokenness has continued. Death, sickness, anger, family tensions ... the list goes on and on. At one point over the Easter week-end, the comment was made that "it feels like everyone we know is broken" - and even though we know the Who that can fix them, we can't force them to the Answer. They have to choose Him on their own. We can encourage and pray and point and talk, but in the end, it's up to them.
And I'll be honest, it's hard to sit back and watch. There have been tears and petitions to God that He would "fix" them, and that we would be available as the "tools" that He can use. There have been times when I have wanted to pack a bag and move to a deserted tropical island with a hammock, a stack of books, and something cool and refreshing with a tiny umbrella close at hand. I don't want to see people (which makes it an interesting mood to be in, considering that I work with the public), we haven't wanted to celebrate Peter's promotion, and there has generally been (in the words of the Disney classic, Casey at the Bat), "no joy in Mudville".
And now you see why I haven't been blogging. What do I have to share? The cold reality is that this world is full of brokenness, which is exactly why the Easter Song has been stuck in my head. I don't think it's a coincidence that I have been reminded over and over that Christ died, Christ arose, and I have the opportunity to offer that eternal Hope up to everyone I meet. There are storms in life, but nothing that takes God by surprise. I can't see the future, I don't know when I'm going to quit my job or when or where I will work next, we don't have a clue what the future will hold for Peter's co-workers or how that will affect us, but we rest in knowing that there was an empty tomb on Easter morning, and we are blessed to serve a Risen Savior, 365 days of the year.
By: Alfred H. Ackley
I serve a risen Saviour; He's in the world today.
I know that He is living, whatever men may say.
I see His hand of mercy, I hear His voice of cheer,
And just the time I need Him He's always near.
He lives! He lives! Christ Jesus lives today!
He walks with me and talks with me along life's narrow way.
He lives! He lives! Salvation to impart!
You ask me how I know He lives? He lives within my heart.
In all the world around me I see His loving care,
And though my heart grows weary I never will despair.
I know that He is leading, thro' all the stormy blast;
The day of His appearing will come at last.
Rejoice, rejoice, O Christian! Lift up your voice and sing
Eternal hallelujahs to Jesus Christ, the King!
The Hope of all who seek Him, the Help of all who find,
None other is so loving, so good and kind.