Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Joy & Pain - Like Sunshine & Rain

I like to read the last chapter of books first. It drives family and friends nuts. I like to know how the story plays out it gives me insight to plot line development. When my SIL gives me a book to read she makes me promise to read it in the proper order – from beginning to end.

One of the things I like about Christianity is knowing how the story ends. I love knowing that everything on earth is passing away – that there will be a new heaven and a new earth - that every tear will be wiped away by our Lord – that his people will dwell with him forever – that he is preparing a place for us. It helps me keep perspective when the ship is knocked around by the storm.

Like when OSHA shuts down job sites in Alaska and Washington on the same day, the same day our insurance company is meeting with us and with the client from Hell to determine the legitimacy of his claim. The same day I heard the sad news of a woman who’s husband had died from a fluke accident – the same day I had to tell my son that the paperwork hasn’t come back from the state so he will need to spend a night in foster care. Yet all of these things both difficult and tragic are simply passing tribulations. Even in their midst, I can look with hope to the future confident in the promises of the Lord, and every now and then he gives me a glimpse into that future filled with joy.

Like the simple joy of spending the afternoon with our son, running errands or helping him make a snack (tuna and BBQ sauce sandwich are you kidding me) while I make dinner. Slowing down the busyness of life to simply be with this child. To just listen to him or watch him learn how to pogo, or hold him while he cries telling me that he wishes he could have met the Governor when he was in the Capital so he could have discussed this law she signed that forces him to leave us for a night every ten days.

It’s this time spent that reaches into the future, reaches all the way to eternity. The homes we build will crumble to the ground like so much dust, but my afternoon with my son, attending Mass and an ever so brief adoration, the quite time at home unplugged from the TV, the PSP, the internet and even the radio, these are the milliseconds that will resonate throughout time. This is where the joy of the Lord, the promises of the Lord, the painful echo of paradise lost, and the hope filled ache in the promise of the resurrection touches the earth and we see the shadowy glimpse of what is to come. This is where the love of God manifests in a tangible way and where we come to know that its all true. I’ve read the last chapter of the book it all turns out very well in the end.

Lord bless your people, be our shield and our guide. We ask this through Christ our Lord, Amen.


Jennifer F. said...

Wow. This is an amazing post. I'm so impressed at your ability to keep your eyes on the big picture in the midst of all this.

Anne Marie said...

Thanks. Sometimes when things feel really heavy I just think of St. Joan of Arc. Now she had some challenges in her young life, and while I admire her and ask for her prayers I also pray that I’m never challenged in the same ways she was.

Katie said...

I always read the last sentence of a book first :)

This is a beautiful post, thank you!

Anne Marie said...

Thanks Katie.