Last week I read Lament for a Son by Nicholas Wolterstorff. It's the journal of a father whose son suddenly died at the age of 25. I really appreciate the book because Wolterstorff offers an honest look at death, grieving, and human suffering, and he doesn't settle for the easy answers that we too often come up with in the face of tragedy.
One of the things he writes about is how death is God's enemy. We weren't created to die, and even when though He works everything for good, it was never supposed to be this way. Wolterstoff says that death is demonic...and that's why Christ came to conquer it. But He comes to us in our suffering by taking suffering upon Himself. Our God is familiar with sorrow, and even after His resurrection, His scars remain.
The book ends with Wolterstorff imagining the resurrection, when he will hear his son say, "Hey Dad...I'm back!" He struggles with this, because it seems so unbelievable...but it's the object of our hope.
So I was laying in bed thinking about all this the other night. I believe Jesus will return and will raise our dead and will make things right in this world...but so often, it's like a fairy tale to me. I believe it, but it doesn't seem real.
But as I was thinking that night, suddenly I got it. I was thinking about our bodies being imperishible and filled with life...I was thinking about how this world will be healed and made new...I was thinking about all the people I'll spend time with, and how we'll all be able to spend all the time in the world with Jesus. Maybe we'll even play Frisbee. ;-)
But as I was thinking about this, the imminence of it became so clear to me that I even physically reacted...it was like my stomach flipped. It's not something that might happen...it will happen. This is our hope, and the one who promised it is faithful. Oh wow...
It's appropriate to be thinking about this as we move from Lent into Easter, I think. The reflecting we've been doing about our brokenness doesn't get us very far if we don't have hope for beautiful, fresh, strong, Life. And as surely as He rose from the dead, it's coming.
It's here, and it's coming...