Sunday, April 20, 2014

Thirty four years ago...We had the whole world ahead of us!
Today, this Easter Sunday, I prayed hard to just make it out of bed and press one step into my small, overturn world.   No "up from the grave" resounding from the keys of our living room Kimball like Easters past, no picking out the perfect spring tie for my sweet man, no one to tell me that I look okay for The Big Event.
 Sweet Jesus, this is not about me this shaky morning; it's all about You, the Risen One. Turn my grave story into one of hope.
Lean in strong...Don the purple dress I wore to celebrate Rob's welcome into his Savior's arms. Yes, wear the regal one for the King who gives you courage.
Oldest son graciously fills the empty seat next to me...My pew family bolsters me with love and encouragement.
I make it through strains of alleluia.
Silence swallows the late afternoon.  Like Mary, I run to the tomb, bringing stuff as women folk often do. I already know Rob's not really there, but... I take snippets of the church hydrangeas and a band I've sported all week to help me remember nails and crossbeams and redemption. 

I read the Resurrection Story;  Rob lives the Resurrection Story! 
 God, turn this grave into one of hope. 
Gathering my chair and Bible to leave, a Persian family gathers around a freshly dug grave. We nod and smile with understanding glances, then, the matriarch approaches me.  'My husband was buried here last week...stage IV pancreatic cancer...he lived three months after they told us.'  I whisper, "I know, mine too." Two wives, different accents, different worlds, immediately bond over the toll of this devastating cancer. She's still numb, feels nothing...I've traveled far enough to feel everything. But today holds Hope... I share with Spirit-infused boldness; a stricken family hears about Grace, the very reason I'm still standing. I drive away one friend richer.  
A quick stop for refreshment finds me sharing Jesus to another griever.  Milagra, her name, and I remind her that she is a miracle created by God. This newly divorced woman spews tear- stained disdain and despair and all I can do is hold her hand, shake my head, tell her I don't have answers for our present pain...but I have Hope to offer and today is the reason. 
Thirty-four Easters ago, baby in arms, husband by my side, never would I have believed today would take this precarious path. 
But this I know; He's using these ashes every shaky step along the way.

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