Recently I read Rob Bell’s Love Wins, which has had me thinking about the theme of resurrection, and dying to live (so i give thanks to this book on the following reflection). But more importantly than the inspiration of that book, I’ve been seeing this theme in my life this summer. And this morning, one of my fellow summer staffers, Grace, was baptized in the natural pool here at Pico as the sun rose, and the pattern of life through death is present on my heart and mind.
It’s amazing, the way this universe works.
Life out of death,
Joy out of pain,
Birth out of endings,
Seed out of the scar.
The rhythm of this universe – God’s rhythm – is such, and this is the fundamental message of the cross:
The death and rise to life of Jesus has inaugurated a new way, a way where
do not have the final word, but
have the final word.
This summer God is bringing me on this path, this ancient, yet ever-new rhythm of death, in order to live.
There are many things in me (in fact, the all of me as a whole) that need to die. Selfishness, jealousy, self-loathing, self-centeredness… these need to die. The bible talks about this all the time: dying to sin, to self, and living in Christ. This is the story that we are all invited into, the invitation that Christ extends to each one of us.
Death, in order to live.
Brokenness, in order to be reconciled, to be sewed up and made new.
Seed, sprouting in the scar.
God is working in big ways this summer, and I can see it and feel it.
This time in the DR has been hard, harder than expected…it has been a time of death. (But in asking God to break me and restore me this summer, I perhaps should have seen it coming). It has not always been fun, those moments of realizing the ugliness and brokenness within me. Growth is not easy stuff! (Just see when Harry takes skelegrow in HP 2 for a vivid illustration :))
… But what better way could there be to live? (to die?) “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” –Phil. 1:21
"Though death is in the healing, it will heal." - Wendell Berry, The Slip
We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you. – 2 Corinthians 4:10-12
Behold, I am making all things new! – Revelation 21:5
Death, death, and more death.
And then life, breaking forth amidst it all.
So may you too hold onto the promise. The stories are true. Bringing joy out of pain, freedom out of bondage, and life out of death, Jesus makes all things new.
grace and peace,
sunrise, frontón, DR // june 2011