funeral and a party.

There is no pretty bow with which to tie around this post.
There aren’t any kazoos or balloons or cake.
This isn’t a party.
Not yet, anyway. 
Apparently, there will be a party. But it’s not tonight.
It’s like a funeral and a party. All at the same time. 

Mourning over what should have been, but wasn’t.
And rejoicing over the way things should have been, but aren’t.

Tonight I am haunted in the darkness by demons I’d rather ignore. I don’t want to acknowledge or entertain them. I don’t even want to address the fact that they are real. My mind has become a battlefield. And I find myself huddled in the corner of the room waving my white flag. Oh, how easily I give up. I’d like to think I’m not a fighter. That’s easier than admitting I actually am and I just choose my battles poorly. I fight when I shouldn’t. I surrender when I am called to fight. And I hold way too tightly to the idea that I am in control of anything.

Let me just be honest and say that life has dealt me a fairly shitty hand. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not all shit. Just a lot of it. Is it okay to be unsettled with that fact? Maybe even a little angry? Or sad? Is that fair? I would bet money that my story isn’t the only littered with destruction and devastation of sin and heartache and brokenness. Nothing is as it should be. Everyone knows this. Everyone has experienced it. Kids are mean in school. Siblings fight. People die. Parents get divorced. Kids get abandoned. Lies get told and lies get believed. Nothing seems to work right. Everything has a trace of sadness over the fact that “this isn’t the way it was meant to be.” These things are sad and wrong and horrible. Surely warranting heartache and mourning. Things are broken and we are all too painfully aware of it. And so we cry. We get angry. We wave our fists and wonder why things that were never meant to be are now our reality. This is the funeral we all attend. And its all too familiar. 

Break out the kazoos. Things that should have been, aren’t. Yes, there are things that didn’t play out like they should, and we mourn. But surely there are things that didn’t play out like they should, and we should rejoice. I should be dead a hundred times over. From my foolish mistakes and my foolish choices, I shouldn’t be here. And more than just a physical death, we are all deserving of a very real spiritual death. And, here’s the kazoo cue. You ready for it? Jesus. Saves. He has saved me from me. He has saved me from God. He has saved me to God. He has saved me from countless things I didn’t even know I needed saving from. It shouldn’t be this way. But it is.

He has saved me.

I realize the funeral part of all this seems longer than the party part. Maybe because I am there now. Sitting in the rain next to an open grave mourning the way things have turned out. It is sad. There is no denying that. There is no getting around the fact that things are broken and sad and make your stomach do those awful knot things that it does when you can’t decide if you need to vomit or hit something, or both. But, there is a party to be had. The one where death and brokenness and lies and failures and unmet expectations and sin are all buried in that casket with the things we once thought would bring us life. 

So here’s to Jesus who just might help me believe these things. 
Here’s to the One who this party celebrates. 
Here’s to flipping the coin on its head and shaking things up a bit. 

Here’s to mourning over what should have been, but wasn’t. 
And rejoicing over the way things should have been, but aren’t.