there are cracks in this earthen vessel.
there are moments where i feel alive and thankful for the smallest things, full of wonder and hope for what this life may bring and joy for what is today. a bird song on a random warm january day, the steam from my morning cup of coffee rising slowly in the rays of the rising sun, a reading lesson with a six year old by a crackling fire. these are good, soul filling things.
but there are also moments, days, weeks even where each moment bears the weighty reality of this broken world. i'm sick, again. mind is foggy, breathing labored. the kids are fighting, again. the bickering makes my weary body ache. it makes my heart ache, too. sometimes it feels as if this world is fighting against dave, against his integrity, against his desire to work hard and humbly with honesty and conviction. in these moments the glimmers of hope are hardly there. it's almost as if i need others to see the hope for me. i know it's there. it's got to be there.
my grandma, worn and weary from a life lived in this harsh world, but soul alive because of her hope in christ, reminds me "you know, your grandpa preached a sermon about the fiery furnace one time back in iowa" she says, a glimmer in her misty eye. "he proclaimed it loud, there from the pulpit, 'you're safest when you're in the fire' he said 'because Jesus is there, too."
my friend laura speaks of joseph. reminds me of the one time he was thrown in this pit and that other time he was sold as a slave. oh and yes, then he was falsely accused and thrown in jail, his name smeared through the stinking mud....all of his life bankrupt before him.
there is trouble here. heartache to fill a thousand days. what does it mean to hope in christ alone? when all else fails? when all else crumbles? what does it really look like for all to be stripped away so that hope can truly be found, so that peace can finally be felt, so that joy can actually be a permanent fixture of our days?
there are two things my mind chooses to put my hope in. his presence and his goodness. his ability to be here in the mess, grieving for us as we lay flat on our backs, wind knocked out of us at the bottom of the pit. and his goodness that will find a way out and carry us to safety.
he is here and he is good.
"and joesph said to them, "you intended to harm me, but God intended it for good, to accomplish what is now being done."