*Before I ever saw the stunning post our dear Beth wrote and posted last Saturday, I also woke up Saturday with these words on my heart about the Holy Week. This will help you understand why I keep referring to Saturday. Grin. I love y’all!
I woke up this morning and after pondering my breakfast options, my thoughts immediately went to the weight of today. This quiet Saturday, or as some might label it; the wait.
What was everyone thinking? How was everyone processing this crucifixion they had just witnessed a mere 12 hours ago? What was running through the mind of Jesus’ mother Mary that went unrecorded in scripture? What thoughts was she pondering? How many tears had she shed that no one saw?
Days earlier these people were watching Jesus perform miracles. They thought they had found the Savior, but now they’d been robbed of their peace with no hope in sight. Saturday was the day all hope seemed lost. They didn’t realize yet that Sunday was coming.
For most of us, it’s the time in between that’s the foggiest. It’s the time in between that proves our character. It’s the time in between that makes us or breaks us.
Confusion sets in.
Hopelessness sets in.
Doubt sets in.
A lack of understanding sets in.
Coping sets in.
Disillusionment sets in.
Cynicism sets in.
Unbelief sets in.
Because when we’re robbed of something we felt sure of, even if it was Jesus Himself, we can’t help but wonder what in the world He’s doing.
The weight of waiting can feel unbearable at times, crushing even, and can seem longer and longer with each passing hour. As our dear Beth so eloquently penned it, “Sometimes waiting is the work.” And work it is, at least most days it feels like work. Working at fighting for joy, contentment, peace, solutions and whatever else we feel like we’re working for. Often times we’re fighting for identity.
Because we all know that though we label these times in between as waiting for something, whether it be a job, a husband, a baby, a breakthrough, a prodigal child returning home, a resolution to a conflict, a long suffering to end, whatever “it” is, they are really just times of refinement and we flat out do not like it because it’s uncomfortable. We grasp for control to no avail, and our ugly flesh is exposed. We either fall to our knees or run to comfort because the thought of facing pain or loneliness is almost unbearable. And while our coping appears to everyone as us looking for a solution, we’re really just looking for compassion. We just want someone to understand our pain without trying to fix it, because deep down inside we know Jesus is the only thing that can truly fix us. Instead of letting Him work everything out for good, we give our best efforts to work everything together for good.
The time in between…it’s the hardest.
But then, just when we have the confidence to face it head on, just as Mary couldn’t wait any longer to be near Jesus, near his physical body, a little light of hope breaks through. Because after all, over and over He tells us not to be troubled. Instead of finding him where we thought He was, He ends up somewhere completely different, somewhere we didn’t see coming.
In our home.
In our people.
In our workplace.
Jesus not only spent three days in a tomb, He also spent nine months in Mary’s womb. But yet we still continue to be shocked, stunned, and surprised at how He comes through! And it really was better than we could have imagined! And He really did work all the blood and bruising out for good! And it really does change everything. Our songs, our stories, they may be incomplete, but we still sing. We still sing because He is sovereign and His plans cannot be thwarted, try as we (or the enemy) might to thwart them. (Job 42:2)
Because that’s the kind of God He is.
The God who sees.
Who has compassion and solutions.
Who is our hope.
Who saw both Saturday and Sunday coming.
Who really did die for us so we could spend eternity with Him.
Who really does love us.
Who really doesn’t waste one minute of the time in between.
Who has provided everything we’ve needed thus far.
Who causes us to look back and see His hand of faithfulness all over our many seasons.
Who resurrects what’s been lying lifeless.
Who makes everything beautiful in His time.
Who gives us an identity, labeled us as a somebody dearly and eternally loved, despite what has or hasn’t come our way.
I know, because I’m currently living in a “time in between”.
And although confusion, discouragement, loneliness, mistrust, fog and anxiety have all set in on different days and different times, there is hope. And it is good.
And it is Jesus Christ himself. It always has been. So we fix our eyes on Him; and suddenly, the time in between doesn’t seem so hopeless, the weight, a little lighter.
As the old hymn so powerfully words it, “…all other ground is sinking sand.”
“O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption.” Psalm 130:7