What do you do when you find yourself at a crossroads? You go to the cross.
It’s so tempting to try to figure everything out with our minds, but what about when you feel you can’t trust your mind? Try as we might, there are times when we can’t take it apart and put it all back together in any kind of order. And when the heart and emotions get involved we might as well throw anything rational out the window.
When the heart gets involved, thought and logic whirl around inside your head and beat the sides of your brain like a tennis shoe in a spin dryer until nothing is clear.
When I entered prayer this past Tuesday, I took no hope of feeling better, no expectation of much of anything. It was simply all I knew how to do. There are times you enter prayer that way.
I got a call from Mom on Monday evening. My Dad was on his way to the ER for irregular heartbeat. My Mom sounded okay, but I could hear the panic undertow in her voice. She said he hadn’t felt good for a couple of days. They ran some tests and released him, and he was back in his own bed by 2:30 Tuesday morning.
I thought of that old Lewis Grizzard line: “Elvis is dead and I don’t feel so good myself.” Now, my Mom, my Dad and my brother are all on medication for heart issues. And I don’t feel so good myself. Actually, I feel fine, but the stress of all this might kill me.
I want to swoop down and fix it all for them. I want to go take over and do what they can’t.
When it’s hard for me to open a jar, I feel bad because if it is hard for me, how much harder for my Mom? It’s little things like that I think of. I toss and turn in the night and wonder when the next call will come. First, Dad’s eyes and now his heart. I realize I am going through a kind of grief. A grief of knowing someday they really won’t be here.
So Tuesday morning I really needed my prayer time. I even lit three candles instead of one. I needed Father Son and Holy Ghost all hands on deck prayer.
And kneeling there by my chair in the silence, I felt the weight of importance in each and every moment we have here on earth. This life is but a breath, a vapor. A little while and then we are gone……
Eternity stretches before us like a shimmering cord that reaches to Heaven and it’s tethered to the cross. I know if I cling to Jesus, somehow I can always find my way back home. I just have to trust Him with this little speck of time that is my life.
No matter what the heartache. No matter how bleak the future might have looked 30 minutes ago, I now find that a few moments at the foot of a blood soaked cross, a light switch has been thrown. All of a sudden, just for this moment my future is as bright as the noonday sun. And that one moment is enough.
And oh what relief it is to find at times when the soul has been swept bare and black as night that Jesus has not left, that He’s there holding out a candle to light my way.
I long for the times before vandals, when the churches were open and the light was always on and the pastor or priest was always “In.” I long for the little country parish when the minister made house calls and offered a cup of tea. When you could just show up without an appointment.
I may not have Father Tim, but I have Jesus.
And He is always “In”