Thursday, September 27, 2012

On Deaths and Resurrections and Remembering

How like our God, to make it happen in the autumn. The most significant death of my life so far in a season marked by death, on fire and color with death, leading into a winter of waiting. It was in this season, last year, that so much came to an end.

It happened in November last year, but it started long before that. We didn't know what was coming, but we knew something was coming; the death came in pieces to us. Still comes in pieces.

It was my birthday this week. And because it is the nature of grief to revisit me, it came on that day. It came alongside all the love that came to me. It reminded me of last year, and the beginning of the end of our time in that community.

Our God has been good to us in the past year. He was faithful, and loving, and strong. There has been so much life that has come after that soul crushing day, that it feels wrong, sometimes, to still be sad. Feels wrong to let myself feel it. I feel like a traitor to my healing and all that has been made beautiful.

I get frustrated with myself: how many more times will I write about this? How long will I remember? But the simple answer is: forever. I will write about this forever. Let me remember every year. Let autumn come, and with it, that ache in my heart of both tremendous grief and overflowing gratitude. They run together. We can't have Easter without Good Friday. There is no resurrection without death.

Didn't our Jesus, who taught us how to live, also teach us how to die? How to live again? How to grieve well and how to rejoice well? Come Lord Jesus, teach me. 

I am announcing this my Lenten Season. I will mark every Triumph. I will mark each day of Ashes. I will wash feet and eat and drink and remember. I will call those days of cruelty and mockery and betrayal and pain Good. I will make stations. And come November 18th, I will celebrate the Gospel that is coming true every day of my life before and after and since. After so much death, He is Risen! And so am I.