The Pain of Saturday
I woke up and the sun was shining. My mood instantly felt brighter; after two days of clouds, rain and snow and yet another disappointing doctor appointment, the sun's rays were promising me a new day.
But as the hours ticked by, I started feeling more and more sick, and in turn, I began to feel more and more discouraged.
So I did what I normally do - I tried to cope through escapism. I blasted my favorite playlist. I read. I watched House Hunters International. I ate a pile of popcorn. And at the end of all that, I still felt physically terrible and perhaps now a little more depressed. Nothing was reaching my heart and I was aching.
Do you ever go through periods where it feels like God has been relatively silent in your life? That's where I feel like I've been lately. I have been crying out for wisdom, peace, healing ... and I've been met with silence. I have tried to stay in a place of trust but I've had a few moments lately where I felt broken and angry.
In the midst of my own pain, I have seen so many people around me dealing with their own struggles. Health battles, financial strain, death, loss, grief ... not to mention the unrest in our country. It all feels like too much for us to bear.
The capacity we all have to feel pain and grief and still function is unbelievable. I was reading today about the pain Jesus felt in the garden of Gethsemane. It was so intense He was sweating drops of blood and in Matthew 26:38 Jesus said to his disciples, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death." Sorrow to the point of death! As humans, I know many of us can relate to this sentiment but to hear our Savior use those words is shocking.
The concept of "fully God and fully man" is not one I can easily understand but the Bible makes it clear that even with knowing the outcome of His coming crucifixion, Jesus still struggled! Jesus KNEW His dying on the cross would result in the salvation of humanity. He KNEW in three days' time He would rise from the dead. He KNEW these things and yet He still asked in Matthew 26:39 "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me."
Jesus understands our pain, our sorrows, our desire to be taken out of the hellish situations we may find ourselves in. Because He experienced the ultimate sorrow, the ultimate pain, the ultimate humiliation, brokenness, aloneness, separation ... But the key is, right after expressing to God how much He did not want to go through with this, Jesus said "Yet not as I will, but as you will" (Matthew 26:39).
We all know the Easter story. On Friday, Jesus was crucified and all seemed lost. On Saturday, the oppression of hopelessness must have been so intense, you could have seen it. Jesus' followers were probably reeling from the shock of everything they thought they knew being turned upside down. Sunday was the glorious resurrection and the promise of an even brighter future than had previously been imagined.
But right now I think a lot of us are in the pain of Saturday. Right now, it feels like it has been one very long, painfully slow Saturday.
2020 and 2021 have been excruciating for so many of us. Honestly it feels like the appropriate time to scream out "OKAY GOD, WHERE ARE YOU?!" And I fully believe God is okay with us expressing our feelings. But at the same time, we have to continue to press in. I don't hear You, but I want to- speak to me. I don't see You, but I want to - reveal yourself to me. I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief (Mark 9:24).
The pain of Saturday is real, it is deep, it is gut-wrenching. But Sunday is coming. Let us hold unswervingly to this hope we have - Sunday is coming and with it, new fullness of joy and a future beyond our wildest imaginings.
This is a playlist I made of songs that have been encouraging me through my Saturday. I pray it speaks to your heart during your own Saturday.
All my love,