Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Lift Me Up

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:21

But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
1 Corinthians 1:27

Flood   (Click on the title for the song by Jars of Clay)

Rain, rain on my face
Hasn't stopped raining for days
My world is a flood
Slowly I've become one with the mud

But if I can't swim after forty days
And my mind is crushed by the crashing waves
Lift me up so high that I cannot fall
Lift me, oh, woh

Lift me up when I'm falling
Lift me up, I'm weak and I'm dying
Lift me up, I need You to hold me
Lift me up and keep me from drowning again

Downpour on my soul
Splashing in the ocean, I'm losing control
Dark sky all around
Can't feel my feet touching the ground

Calm the storms that drench my eyes
Dry the streams still flowing
Cast down all the waves of sin
And guilt that overthrow me

Today is a day to share.  I keep thinking about Boston - and I think about other needless, senseless, crazy violence.  Not only in the news, but all over - in movies, books, music, shows - all over. 

Sometimes I feel this violence around me - like rain - incessant, unmerciful - puckering my skin, saturating the air, making it heavy, hard to breathe.  Blurring my vision, dulling my hearing, deadening my touch.  We are all exposed.  

I think back to conversations with my daughter about rain.  How it is good for the plants, for the trees, for us.  I think about the significance of water - cleansing, washing, refreshing - new birth and new life through water.  I think about the Valley of the Shadow of Death and I think about how Jesus calmed the storm, and how God sent a rainbow.

I see the rainbow on the news - on the relentless news about Boston.  I see first responders - coming to the aid of victims.  I hear about runners, exhausted from their race - continuing their personal marathon to give their own life blood - help for the wounded.  I am overwhelmed by a sense of victory - good over evil.  People are gathering to pray, to strengthen, to comfort, to aid.  People are choosing to gather - despite fear - they are choosing to celebrate the living, to honor the dead and injured - despite the not-knowing.  

I know - like Job who surely had a right to feel like a drowning man - I know that my Redeemer lives.  By His blood, I know that evil has been defeated.  In God's time, I know that this violence will be no more.  

But today, in this world - in this time, I walk in the Valley. The Valley of Fear, and Not-Knowing.  The Valley of Unanswered Questions.   The Valley of Downpour On My Soul.  But, Jesus is with me - with all of us.  He leads us through.  With His help, we can overcome evil with good.  With His help, we can be balanced - strong and weak, wise and foolish.  With His help, we will choose joy.

Heavenly Father, thank you for lifting us up, for holding us, for keeping us from drowning.

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I know we probably haven't met in person, but I believe that the sharing of our ideas and thoughts, sometimes our hearts and souls, makes us more than strangers. I would like to say friends. Thank you for taking the time to contribute to my little space - I appreciate you.