The days are busy and the to do list never seems to get smaller. My laundry is piled high and my grief is still heavy.
Next week will mark three years since I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. That day is also known as Jane’s birthday. It’s looming on the calendar and I have such mixed emotions. 2020 has been a terrible year for many and our family is certainly no exception, but I’ve found myself with dangerous thinking lately. I was convicted recently when I realized just how often I was saying things like “If I can just finish the laundry.” “Once I get on top of the to do list, things will be easier.” “After we figure out what to do for Jane’s birthday, maybe we will have a respite from such intense grief.” Or the most popular sentiment, “Surely 2021 will be better.” It’s as if I believe that when we ring in the new year all the plexiglass will come down and life will be normal. That’s not true, of course. My daughter won’t be back. We will still likely be dealing with the ramifications of an election year, racial injustice and a pandemic, just to name a few things.
It’s as if I believe that when we ring in the new year all the plexiglass will come down and life will be normal.
I’m convicted because this survival mindset isn’t biblical, it’s futile. Jesus didn’t say, “In 2020 you will have trouble, but take heart, 2021 will be better.” No, Jesus said “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Friends, if my hope is found in a date on the calendar, I will be disappointed. If my peace is found in a to do list completed, I will be let down. And if my grief is seemingly eased by time and not the God who holds time in his hand, I’m grasping at straws. 2020 may have been a terrible year for us, but for some their terrible year has already taken place or is yet to come. In this world we will have trouble. Our story may not get better in the world’s terms. Our suffering could get worse. But we have eternity to look towards. We have a Redeemer that bears our burden and doesn’t push it to a later date.
We have a Redeemer that bears our burden and doesn’t push it to a later date.
I confess that I’ve been living for the wrong year lately. I’ve placed a futile hope in things that cannot deliver. There is only one that can give us the peace and the hope we crave, and he has already overcome the world.