Tonight, for some reason I feel the sadness of the "afterall," but my heart pleas from a different place entirely. Fitzsimmons sings, "Please don't leave me..." and though I feel at home in this phrase it's not because I want someone to return to me, but I feel the song drifting from the lips of my glorious Savior. The sadness does not come from my hope in a relationship that will only disappoint. No, my sadness comes from disappointing the One who offers the only hope.
Yesterday, Good/Black Friday passed without a solemn reflection or study, though I saw a bit of the processional in the city, noted the elaborate alfombras in the streets (beautiful, colored sawdust carpets), and searched for several inspiring articles and meditations (relevant, chris tomlinson's poem). I spent most of the day with a student and her family, reading, hammocking (my newest favorite thing to do), swimming, playing volleyball, eating, and passing Spanish conversation.
So, after I got home and checked my twitter/email/facebook (in that order), I was just ready to be done. I didn't have any ambition to open my Bible or journal or pray. I was just tired. So, I slept like a rock and this morning came without announcing its arrival too loudly (or too early). And, about the day I went.
Something I forgot to mention ... an extremely important *something* happened last night and again now as I am writing this.
If you haven't been following Central America's news lately, the current drought is a pretty big deal. Some people in certain areas are only receiving water once a week and others less than that.
Last night, when I was outside the city with my student's family, the drips started to softly pound the tiled roof. It had been so long since the steady sound and smell of rain had visited this place. When the electricity went off, I really started to breathe in the smell I love so much: wet ground.
How strange, I thought, that on the night when Jesus was so cruelly crucified all those years ago... on this night the rain falls to water the earth. Only with this sorrow from heaven could there be any chance of life here on earth. In "Reason for God" Keller writes that Christ's forgiveness for us was costly suffering. This forgiveness of a world of sins stands very intentionally in front of the most costly suffering the same world of sins could muster and says, "I will take it all."
The meditating I refused last night is now hitting me like the lines of Fitzsimmons' sad song of broken wedding vows. I am most humbled and hurt by my willingness to be so cavalier with my Savior, who has suffered at great cost to forgive me and pull me closer to His side. Though my Groom has laid out great, mysteriously beautiful instructions to know and love Him, I leave for other lovers.
Like almost every other day this week, this morning I grabbed my stack of books and set off for morning coffee and a place to flip some pages. I met up with my friend Jess and we compared stories about Semana Santa and laughed about the silly things and frustrated ourselves over how our lives aren't exactly how we pictured them and how there are so many things we could change and how (especially) we would love it if God could very obviously point out the next steps in our journey.
At one point in our conversation, Jess said, "Sometimes, after we talk I feel so... discontent."
I think I said, "I KNOW!" before she even finished.
And it rains.
It's still raining outside and I am so unbelievably glad.
In Catholic tradition, the most ceremonious part of Easter is Friday when Jesus was crucified. They march through the streets, build beautiful shrines, act out portions of the event, and mourn the loss of the Messiah. And then it's over.
It's still raining outside and I am so unbelievably glad, because the rain is LIFE and not death. Because though my Savior suffered at great cost for my penchant for other lovers, it is only through His suffering that I can live.
Just as the death of drought finds life only by rain, so our heavy, other-lover souls find LIFE by Christ's costly tears of suffering.