“We are suspended in these brief moments.
Like all of space and time pause to watch heaven draw near.
In a chasm between life and death.
Sweet and painful tension.
The holding on and letting go.
Gratitude and heartache.
Our Maker meets us here. It feels like holy ground. He catches every tear.
I do not fight the brokenness.
With each breath, I am sheltered by His wings.
So we wait.
Neither anxious nor debilitated.
Whispering His praises.
Thanking God for this moment.
For every moment that led to this one.
And for the infinite moments to come
That will be spent in glory.
Praise the Lord.”
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:4
Five months ago I wrote these words during the final days of my dad’s life on earth.
I don’t think I have sufficient words to describe what it feels like to come face to face with death. To hold hands with it. To watch it recklessly consume the life of someone you love so dearly.
It feels like suffocation. Like drowning. Like your heart is dry-heaving with relentless grief. Like a nightmare that you don’t get to wake up from.
And yet… (there’s that little phrase again)…
Death didn’t get the final word.
Oh, yes– death came. It blindsided us. It ransacked our lives. It left a mark.
But it lost.
With each heartbreaking step that my dad took toward his final breath, he also took another step toward the finish line.
One of my favorite quotes says it like this,
“Why, then, should we ever sink overhwlemed with distress, when life is so soon over, and death so soon an enrtrance to happiness–to glory?”From Charlotte Bronte’s novel, “Jane Eyre”
While my dad might have been “losing” his life, he was really just taking an early exit to spend eternity with Jesus.
Something that threatened to extinguish my joy was met by the unshakable Prince of Peace.
That’s the power of the Cross. That’s the hope of Jesus.
Someday, my life on this earth will also be over.
And until then,
I’ll keep on holding onto Him.
Holding onto His hope.
Holding onto His joy.
Holding all of His gifts with open and grateful hands.
And I’ll continue to let go of my expectations and of all things that I foolishly believe I’m entitled to… because life–every moment of it–is a gift and it’s on borrowed time.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”Hebrews 12:1-3