Saturday, May 8, 2010

got nothing

I've got nothing by way of a pithy title for this blog. But I'm gonna give myself some grace on that. My body woke up at 5:45, even though I was up late the last two nights. Silly body. Thursday night was a 1am-er because my sweet Lyndsey was here on choir tour. We sat in the dark and talked and talked and talked; then we ate Blueberry Frosted Mini-Wheats and then talked and talked and talked. Then I was up late last night because I hosted a relatively impromptu movie night with the Young Lifers. They said, "Hey! can we come over on Friday and watch a movie?" Sure. I made them treats, got pizza, and let them have a pillow fight in my living room.

What's amusing me this morning is the recovery time I'm needing. I love Lyndz and I love my YL kids, and WOW do I feel like I need to do some serious recharging today. It wasn't just those two events that wiped me. On Wednesday, one of my favorite juniors (he's in my 6th period class) stayed a bit after class to tell me that he has a court date, might be sent to juvi, and get a felony put on his record. I didn't ask for a ton of details because, as I sat there, I got all choked up. This kid isn't one of those rough, hard, cynical boys; deep down, he's a poet, an artist, and smart as a whip.... a whip that has grown up in abject poverty with an alcoholic/absent father. I'm glad this kid's best bud stuck around in class that day to work on vocab and that earlier this year they had both been to Young Life, because I felt The Nudge, took his hand, and started praying. I prayed for favor with judges, comfort and courage in the middle of this, but most of all, I prayed against the lie that this is a death sentence for this kid's hopes and dreams. I prayed that God would take this and make it into something powerful and good. By the end, we were both crying.

Two days later, I'm still wiped from it. I know... the lack of sleep probably hasn't helped. :-)

But as I've been thinking about this week -- praying with this kid that I love, listening to and loving Lyndsey, the kids in my hobbit house on a Friday night -- I was reminded of how Jesus loved. He entered our world, He knew who He was and what God had called him to do, and He hung in the tension between the two. As His follower, I've been asked to do the same. To enter somebody else's word -- really listen and empathize and ask questions; To know who I am in Christ and what He has asked of me -- draw boundaries so I'm not trying to be things I'm not (I'm not so good at this, but I'm working on it); To hang in the tension -- be misunderstood or disappoint those who think I should do more or less than what I'm doing, not run away from relationships that are hard, not self-medicate to ease the pain of these realities. I guess, in some minuscule way, I'm feeling the side-effects of loving how Jesus loved.

And in the middle of this week, the Bethel College Choir came to town. It would've been a great event for any person, but for me, it was exquisite. The glorious mixture of incredible music, overwhelming Truth, and sweet sweet memories made those concerts float over and cover my soul like a cosmic bear hug. There's something about Beauty that simply brings peace and rest. For me, this Beauty also brought great encouragement -- the John Rutter song I posted last has such stirring images...

The journey may be long: no end in sight;
There may be hills to climb, or giants to fight:
But if you’ll take my hand, we’ll walk together t’ward the land of freedom.

Yeah - I'm feeling that. How glad I am for the people God has brought into my life who take my hand and help me up the hill, who pick up the sword when I am cowering behind my shield. The hills are steep and the giants tall, but not unclimbable, not undefeatable. And just when my soul is all encouraged and ready to engage, the song goes on....

I touch a distant hand and feel its glow,
the Hand I hoped was there: at last I know.

Oh my soul.... I'm aching for that day right now. Sometimes I skip merrily along through my life, but after this week, I just want Jesus to be here... really be here.... or me be there.... sometimes the ache is pretty strong, you know? I want my kids to have what they need. I want my sweet cousin to have her hopes fulfilled. I want my Young Lifers to get Jesus. And when those realities seem so far away, I long for Home.

Oh the paradoxical experience of being human! :-) All of these emotions and perspectives and whatnot! I'm not even sure what to do with it all.

So I just say.... Thanks God. Thanks for the privilege and pain of being Your light and love at Davis. Thanks for friends and family and the glory of having those two things be embodied in the same people. And thanks for hope that doesn't disappoint, not because life is perfect, but because You are.

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