In the span of two days I received an onrush of bad news that swept me up and took my breath away.
A friend’s brother died in his bed yesterday. A colleague’s brother was discovered dead in a field. My son’s mentor was rushed to the ER for colon surgery. My neighbor is battling lung cancer.
This leaves me bewildered and numb.
What do we make of trials? If you’re like me, I’m never prepared for them. They always surprise me and yet they shouldn’t because Jesus warned us we would have them in this life.
I was looking at quotes from John Newton and found this one:
“Trials remedy fictional escapism. Trials are the onrush of stinging realism crashing the idealized party we call ‘life.’ When these serious trials interrupt our lives, we ‘run simply and immediately to our all-sufficient Friend, feel our dependence, and cry in good earnest for help.’ But when all is well, when life seems peaceful and prosperous, and when the difficulties in life are small, then ‘we are too apt secretly to lean to our own wisdom and strength, as if in such slight matters we could make shift without him.’ We lose out on communion with Christ when we gorge on entertainment.”
What a commentary! Life as fictional escape, a movie of our own making filled with a diet of entertainment. With technology at our fingertips, this indicts everybody.
I’m guilty. I’ve either reading a book, watching TV, or living in my own head. And I think this is life. No wonder I need shaking up and waking up. I need to remember I’m a clay jar with a lot of cracks in it. And I need to live close to the potter, otherwise I’ll dry up and smash to pieces.
What about you?
Talk to me.