Go and die with him

Dearly Beloved,
Grace and Peace to you.

Let us also go, that we may die with him.
—John 11.16

Christ, let me come and die with you.
To you who do miracles, but not always,
I confess that I want you to fix things,
make me an exception, excuse me from pain,
save me from darkness, keep me from death.
But you do not go that way, do you?
You walk through the valley of shadows,
the weakness, the loss, the regret.

No escape is required. There is no blame.
It is the valley where we live, this light
and shadowed place, the life we have,
a journey of surrender, every landmark
a gravestone. Yet here, in this darkness,
you are present, loving, and listening,
You make a holy space for my grieving,
my anger, my doubt, my fear.

And in that holy space you make a door
and walk through it, and bid me come,
to let go of all I cling to, all my old life,
all that’s crushed by grief and ruined by loss;
not to avoid death but to be transformed,
not to stay happy but to die and be raised.
You bid me come, be Martha, empty handed;
be Thomas, willing and self-giving;
be Christ, weeping for love, weeping.
You bid me come, be Lazarus, wrapped
in the bands of my self, my little life,
settled in my tomb and the death of my powers,
hearing your voice,
“Come out!”

Deep Blessings
Pastor Steve
Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light

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