Like gum stuck to the bottom of a shoe that provokingly tugs lightly at each step. Like a bandaid on a crusty wound invoking shrieks from each individual hair upon abrupt removal. Like dog hair to a lint roller absorbing billions of allergens. Like a controlling personality smothering another’s ambitions. Like wet hair plastered to a furrowed brow in a spring downpour. Like a dog digging up its buried rotting treasure.
Like a toddler gripping their solace: a tattered bit of blanket that had wrapped them as an infant. Like a dryer sheet staticly stuck to a freshly tumbled cotton pant leg. Like a human chain formed between explorers crawling through a pitch black cave.
Like a bewildered sinner hanging on each whispered word from their Savior. Like a hopeful lover rereading every written phrase from their distant significant other. Like a married couple who realize they only have each other when life throws them curveballs. Like a wrinkled husband completely depending on his equally wrinkled wife of 61 years.
“I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Heb13.5
“Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up. Furthermore, if two lie down together they keep warm, but how can one be warm alone? And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart.” Eccl4.9-12
Clinging is a love/hate phenomenon—driven by a core need for camaraderie.
I like to be melodramatic and talk about “death of visions” as if it is some 2012 end-of-the-world horror theory. “Death” has a good ring to it. When you tell people you’ve had a “death of a vision,” it makes them pity you. However, I’m starting to realize the whole “death of a vision” thing isn’t God.
Embracing the “death of a vision” mindset is like mourning over a miscarriage before the baby is even conceived. It’s planning and assuming misery.
When you go into something with a 50/50 chance perspective, a “death of a vision” mindset assumes you’re going to fail instead of succeed.
So how should I look at this whole thing instead? Sometimes on paper, reality just doesn’t look good. External voices drown out the still small whisper, and everything feels like a battlefield. It is in these times I want to hold up the white flag of surrender and cry out “Hear ye, Hear ye! A death of a vision has occurred!” Immediately, I forget how far God has brought me.
When I think I’m experiencing the “death of a vision” mindset, I need to persevere until the coming of fruition. There are thousands of stories in the Bible and in history where people got smacked down over and over, but they kept persisting. It’s like that comedic English drinking song, “I get knocked down, but I get up again. You’re never gonna keep me down.”
If Jesus saw everything as a death to a vision, no one would have been raised from the dead. Do we imagine Him running to some dying guy hoping to give CPR before it’s “too late”? Never. Jesus strolled to the place where the people were mourning and raised the lifeless form back to life! If that’s not the fruition then I don’t know what is.
Sometimes we need to push past the “death” that overwhelms us until we feel the life again. God is never far away. He’s just waiting on us to stop waiting around. You’ll fail if you think you’ll fail. You’ll see negativity if you want negativity. You’ll feel like God “isn’t in it” if you believe such lies. I don’t think I’m going to call anything dead until it is buried in the ground and rotted away into dry bones. God can always do a miracle.
Absence sharpens love, presence strengthens it.—Thomas Fuller, English Clergyman (1600’s)
What does reckless love mean? Current definitions cast a hedonistic glow on such a phrase. However, the kind of love I’m talking about is far from fleshly. The dictionary defines reckless as:
reckless |ˈrekləs| adjective “without thinking or caring about the consequences of an action”
Sometimes when we love, we go about it as a stock broker analyzing charts—attempting to understand the quantitative benefits of casting yourself headlong into a boiling cauldron of emotional uncertainty. That’s not reckless enough.
Thankfully I’m not speaking about the recklessness of frivilous youth romance. I’m speaking of a kind of reckless love that only reaps positive dividends. To think! That there would be such intimacy that you need not fear what consequences may come from purely blind passion! Impossible, right? No! It’s real!
When you fall in love with this person, be prepared for the unprepareable. Crazy things will happen. It’s a longterm relationship that lasts until you die. You might even lose your life in the course of chasing after this lover. But at least you’ll die with purpose, knowing you’re dying for love.
This, dear reader, is the kind of love you have when you’re married to Christ.