Quarantine journals: April 23

I’ve always love the number three.

Three sons.

The three best things of my whole entire life.

If you know anything

about me

it’s that I adore my Dad and he is

a carpenter.

He spent the time

and helped

my three sons

make these bluebird houses a few years back.

My part of the job was to find poles to mount them.

And I failed.

At least for a time.

But

THIS TIME.

Quarantine. Social distancing. Ruminating over past and present and things to come.

Somehow it all makes me want to finish

everything.

And so I found these precious birdhouses

my dad

and my boys

made with their own hands.

And finally we mounted them and we are grateful and

we wait.

The bluebirds will come.

New life will come.

Healing and hope and seasons and gatherings and community and

LIFE

will come again.

God’s loyal love couldn’t have run out, his merciful love couldn’t have dried up. They’re created new every morning. How great your faithfulness!

Lamentations 3:22-23 TMV

Quarantine journals: April 18

I stopped putting a tally in this space.

All numbers do is smear and blur the pain and fear.

All numbers do is feed the enemy’s lie that it has the power.

Today I took my dog on a long walk

in the woods. Deliberately,

of course. And just to see

if there’s any marrow left in the world.

For a time

when we were out there alone and all we could hear were birds of all kinds and the swish of still bare tree limbs in the wind

I almost felt

normal

again.

Just me and him

like the good

old days—when was that?

Oh. Yes. A handful of weeks ago.

I almost couldn’t remember

the before.

Or is it just that it hurts too much

to think of all we’ve lost so

fast? “Front only the

essentials,”

Thoreau said,

“living is so dear…”

Indeed.

Quarantine Journals: April 11

I’ve always liked Holy Saturday.

Is that what it’s called?

The in between.

Good Friday and Easter get a lot of attention, and then there’s Saturday when nothing happens.

Silence.

Can you imagine being one of the disciples back then?

Abandoned.

Confused.

Hopeless.

Bewildered.

Utterly disappointed.

The One who was supposed to save was gone.

Dead.

Buried.

But then…

We know what happened.

We know that Sunday’s comin’.

We know that.

And yet,

we’re living in the middle

of one of the great *Saturdays* of our generation.

Death and despair surround us.

We feel frustrated. Afraid. Anxious. Lonely.

Defeated.

I imagine that Saturday some 2,000 years ago, Jesus wanted more than anything to tell his despairing disciples to lift up their eyes, to remember that He had not and would not fail them.

I imagine that if we quiet our trembling hearts long enough to listen, truly listen, we will hear Him again.

We will feel the tender touch of His nail-pierced hand under our chins, lifting our countenances.

We may feel that we’re surrounded, but

we’re surrounded by Him.

Saturday is deafeningly silent, but oh the sound when that stone rolls away tomorrow!

Sunday is comin’.

It always does.

Look up, dear friends.

Not to the hills. Not to the government. Not to hospitals or banks or experts or pundits. Not to our own feeble ways of coping.

Look up to His faithfulness.

Look up to His Word.

Look up, dear friends.

Because Sunday.

Because Sunday is a-comin’!

What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, this Father of our Master Jesus! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven—and the future starts now! God is keeping careful watch over us and the future. The Day is coming when you’ll have it all—life healed and whole.

I Peter 1:3-5 TMV