How Long?

“Are we there yet?” — The mantra of the summer road trip.

I know I’m guilty of showing my impatience. Wishing the time away for that special moment I’ve been waiting for. But what have I missed? What has passed me by while looking so far ahead?

I’m sure you’ve also heard this motto: “Life’s a journey, not a destination”. Yes, but how do you deal with the potholes and detours and “check engine” light?

Psalm 13 speaks of another kind of waiting, longing. Four times in the first two verses Davids asks, “How long?” Pleading for God’s help. Agonizing over what seems to be abandonment. Then it’s amazing how quickly David gets to verse 5: “But…” He quickly turns to trust, rejoice, and have hope.

He knows his God will answer. He is loved by God with an everlasting love. You are loved. Our soul needs to know we are loved. Matthew Henry says it so well:

“Nothing is more killing to a soul than the want of God’s favor; nothing more reviving than the return of it.”

To be heard by God, and answered, is (should be) very humbling. The creator of all that is, listens. To me, to you. What a cause for great rejoicing! But for how long? The well-known band U2 recorded a song 40, which is loosely based on the following verses:

“I waited patiently for the LORD to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD.” Psalms 40:1–3 NLT

The end of the song repeats the question “how long, to sing this song?” Yes, how long?

“I will sing of the LORD’s unfailing love forever! Young and old will hear of your faithfulness.” Psalms 89:1 NLT

Ending or Beginning?

Are you a half-glass-full or half-glass-empty kind of person? Do you think about all the things you have to do, or get to do? Are you excited for something to end? Dreading something? Or is it the beginning that thrills or worries you? The answer’s probably ‘yes’. Me too.

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Experienced? [repost]

This Easter Season we will be sharing our annual Good Friday “service”, Experience the Passion. If you’ve never been before, I hope you’ll plan to do so. If you have been before, I hope you will visit again (and bring a friend).

Hosted in the chapel, Experience the Passion is a self-guided tour of several exhibits that depicts scenes from the last hours of Jesus’ life on earth. A program is provided which describes each station and lists scripture and questions to ponder. There are many different ways to interact with the displays and you’re welcome to stay as long as you’d like.

I am always humbled as I watch people travel through the chapel. Emotions are always a bit mixed: excitement due to expectation, wonder at the sights and sounds, a little disorientation in the darkness, then departing with a sense of sorrow, gratitude, and (I hope) excitement due to expectation because He is risen, and He’s coming again!

What a joy it is to see multiple generations visit as a group; the older explaining to the younger, drawing them close and encouraging them to be involved in the experience too. The younger ask, the older answer. But sometimes the questions are more profound, and really cause you to think.

It is powerful, too, to see people realize that even though they may have come with a group, they have to face the cross individually. And really, we all do. We all have to answer the question, “What will I do with Jesus?”

God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:9–11 NLT

Have you experienced new life in Christ? Share your experience. Encourage others to trust in Jesus who came so that we could experience a rich and satisfying life (John 10:10).