I John 3:18

All original content copyright Jessica Nicole Schafer, 2007-2016.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Better than Dumbledore's Pensieve.

“Easter is all about the wiping away of tears. In our fear of terror and joy, we have forgotten the purpose of tears. We have become embarrassed by them…..We have deemed tears to be childish, whereas in fact they are childlike; and Jesus told us to be childlike. We have allowed our proper dislike of emotionalism to deceive us into trying to ignore our emotions. But if Good Friday and Easter don’t stir our emotions, then the tyrant has indeed enslaved us. We have become like a garden paved over with stone slabs. Many people live like that; God help us, many of us even choose it, rather than face the terror and the joy of our own hearts, let alone of Calvary and Easter.” N.T. Wright in “Following Jesus; Biblical Reflections on Discipleship”

Time is such a precious thing. It can be such a blessing, and yet so cruel. Whether it is living through glorious days, or grief-filled days, time simply ‘has’ us. We usually remember the most extreme times…..the happiest and saddest moments.

Though I never read the books, (please don’t hate me, they’re on my list!) the Harry Potter movies are very dear to me. Harry is one of my favorite characters. I can empathize with him, regarding not having his Mother, and the emptiness it left in his life. Glimpses of the movie come to mind….particularly the “Mirror of Erised”, and Dumbledore’s Pensieve. These parts fascinate me, because they are exactly what so many people would love to be able to have; the opportunity to re-visit those exact moments that are so divinely precious to us, or to live out what we so crave to happen in our lives. (Often, they are the same thing.)

I remember so many people, (with good intentions, mostly) saying things like, “Well, at least you have great memories with your Momma, those will always be there”. And that’s just it….they will always be *there*. Not here, not now…not in the future, but *there*…in the past. That’s what we all do, after all…..live out our moments as best we can, making memories with those we love. But the caveat in all that is memories are not meant to be re-lived. The very definition of it is something in the past.

Yet, what an amazing opportunity to go back in time, right? To go back, to live again those amazing, fulfilling moments that are so dear to our hearts. Or, what an amazing opportunity to jump forward! To live out the dreams we hang onto….the dreams that keep us going, that give us great determination in achieving these goals we’ve set up for ourselves. Noble goals, noble dreams. And some of them, we may just live out. In the future.

But we can’t do that today. It’s impossible. Today is today. I can’t hop back and re-do yesterday any easier than I can skip today.

Enter Easter.

Enter Jesus.

For all our ways of minimalizing grief, brokenness, sorrow and tears….Easter draws us all to the fact that we cannot ignore death.

Easter reminds us that pushing aside our pain and ignoring the Oh! So many days that may give us heartache after heartache will NEVER do.

Easter reminds us that doing the Good work now, His will being done here in our “todays”, as it is in Heaven….is something we get to take part in.

Easter reminds me of Momma.

Easter reminds us that memories will not suffice.

Easter reminds us of a Hope that is bigger than death.

Easter reminds us that there is no Resurrection without a Dark Day.

Easter reminds us that one day, time won’t have us anymore. It will “catch up” to the Resurrection…….

But for today, all we can do is the best with our time.

I’m convinced how we do that is to live these moments, exhausting them with our whole selves….whether we need to laugh, cry, hug, hurt, grieve, travel, run, plan, or just rest…..we need to be all we are, which is totally present in the moment we find ourselves.

Easter does away with our empty, callous, futile efforts of re-living a memory.

Easter replaces the Mirror of Erised and the Pensieve with something far better…something that cannot be held in mere words, images, wishes, or mirrors.

It will replace memories with LIFE again.

We can’t celebrate this thunderous, joyous, indescribable event of Easter without the reality smacking us in the face that it all started with a Man dying on a cross.

“Without Easter, there is no reason to suppose that good will triumph over evil, that love will win over hatred, that life will win over death. But with Easter, we have hope; because hope depends on love; and love has become human and has died, and is now alive for evermore, and holds the keys of Death and Hades. It is because of him that we know---we don’t just hope, we know---that God will wipe away all tears from all eyes. And in that knowledge we find ourselves to be Sunday people, called to live in a world of Fridays. In that knowledge we know ourselves to be Easter people, called to minister to a world full of Calvarys. In that knowledge we find that the hand that dries our tears passes the cloth on to us, and bids us follow him, to go to dry one another’s tears. The Lamb calls us to follow him wherever he goes; into the dark places of the world, the dark places of our own hearts…..and share his ministry of wiping away the tears.” N.T. Wright in “Following Jesus; “Biblical Reflections on Discipleship”

Easter reminds me of a Hope that is FAR better than any memory re-lived.

Easter unravels our broken hearts, all the while piecing them back together.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

My Distant Dream.

I see you in the distance
Though you're just beyond my grasp.
There's so much I wish I knew,
So many questions I long to ask.

As moments turn to months,
And I so often think of letting go...
I try to cling to tiny flashes,
The smallest glimmerings of hope.

Time turns into years, and often
Even loved ones tell me to just give in.
But then this God who loves me
Whispers to my soul within.

I see you again, even farther away,
All around me doubt abounds,
And some days I listen to the emptiness,
Because hope seems to have no ground.

Still you keep shining through, yet small
Though all logic says you're dead,
Hope is hanging on dearly to me,
Trying to find a home in my head.

Through countless tears, I'm swimming,
Broken inside and ripping at the seams,
Yet somehow He keeps me hanging on to you,
My hope, my reason, my dream.