So there I was, in the tangle of things, the mundane, trying to name things, grasping at presence. Naming anchors me, embodies me in the present, and affirms my joy and pain. Without this discipline, I would be swept away by the current of time and to-do lists, a wreck washed up on a distant shore.
Still, saying the almost but not quite right name for things is not enough. That moment I stood still and silenced the running commentary in my head long enough, I lifted my head and noticed: I was headed for disaster. I could sense the planks beneath me weakening, giving way; I tumbled all helter-skelter into that furious surge and swell of current.
Desperation sank and settled like a ball of lead in my hands, the dense, compressed weight of it, dragging me down. I cried out in half-faith to the only God I know, released my desperation to the ether, and suddenly—who can say how?—it was transformed, drifted away like a dandelion floret on the breeze.
Somehow naming the wreck released me from it. Acknowledging my desperation allowed God to meet it; owning my deep emptiness created space for God to enter in. Raging at God in all honesty is better than white-washing wounds.
He whisked me out of the storm and dropped me, weightless, on dry ground. He took the heaviness and gave instead a lightness of being, a garment of praise.
It is not that the wreck was never a wreck. It is not that lead is only a dandelion in disguise. It is not a matter of perspective. That caustic grief, that hounding fear, that sickening vulnerability—they are real. Their roots sink deep. Only, here’s the kicker: the One Incarnate God—He was there, screaming and scrambling for dear life alongside me.
Now He says to me: Let go. Name your grief and let it go. I have already taken your grief as my own. It is by my stripes that you are healed. Release your wounds to my care; they will only fester otherwise. My blood is the balm that makes you new.
His wrecked beautiful body bears the scars that should have been mine.
And here the word for Love expands. Here is Love that suffers so we don’t have to. Here is Love that says: You are welcome here. Come in, come in, come in. Leave your bags, your weapons, your defenses, your fear, your weariness, your grief at the door. Come to the table, you my most treasured guests, commune with each other and rest. Rest. Rest.