Life goes on. That is a sad reality as well as a harsh cruelty. It’s like an avalanche racing down the side of an endless mountain, gaining much velocity and mass with each passing moment. An individual effort to bring this avalanche to an abrupt halt would not only be futile, but would also yield devastating results. I vividly recall when I first witnessed that very avalanche of life plunging toward me.
As we slowly walked toward the hospital exit on April 19th, 2012, my mind was engaging in repeated failed attempts to grasp the events of the day. With my head already spinning, we stepped out of the facility and back into the world. What I witnessed next was not only a pernicious sight, but it persists as one of the most disgusting things to ever appear in my field of vision. The sun was shining. Wow, as soon as we stepped outside that avalanche blasted me in the form of a sunny day. As we drove out of the parking lot I recall being unusually perceptive of details. I witnessed a couple of friends exchanging laughs as they discussed the issues of their own day. I remember a man in a vehicle next to us at a traffic light on his cell phone, seemingly going about business as usual. Yet another young man was blasting the music in his vehicle. Why is the sun still shining on such a dark day? Why does everyone around me seem so unaffected? Doesn’t the world realize the amazing little girl that it just lost? These are the questions that weighed so heavy on my mind. The toughest realization was that for most, this day was simply another ordinary day in which they would engage in the normalcies of their daily routines.
In all honesty, I could have stayed at home on my couch, withdrawing myself from society and making a desperate attempt to stop the avalanche of life. Exactly six months later, there are still times when I wish this were an option. The only problem is as I previously stated, an individual effort to halt the avalanche would yield devastating results. Devastating results within my marriage, the development of my children, relationships, yet most importantly the development of me as a man in Christ.
One of my favorite memories created for me in this life happened around February of 2012. As I reclined in a chair in our living room, I was holding Cali, Kerrington, and Maddison. Maddison was asleep and the other two girls were getting close as I engaged in a conversation over the phone with my parents. I recall telling them that as I held all three of my girls, I could not see myself ever being more fulfilled or happy than I was in that moment. If you have spent any amount of time talking to me, I likely have shared this memory with you. I also am quick to point to this moment as the “summit” of my life. While I understand life is a mountain range full of many peaks and valleys, it is difficult in my human mind not to see that as having been the absolute high point. Through my recent studies God is opening my eyes to the possibilities…let me explain:
The Hebrew name for God, Yahweh, has a meaning that is somewhat lost in translation. In the Exodus account of the Burning Bush, Moses is introduced to this powerful new name for God.
Yahweh is based in the Hebrew Infinitive hayah, ‘to be, or to cause to happen.’
When Ya is added, it becomes third person singular in the masculine, future tense.
So this powerful new name for God ‘Yahweh’, is literally translated to mean:
‘He who will make things happen.’ I believe wholeheartedly that I serve a God that ‘makes things happen!’
In the gospel of John, Jesus declares, “I am” seven times, proclaiming the full extent of His ability to make things happen. This New Testament Greek, ‘ego eimi’, harks back to Moses’ burning bush account with God.
What were the ‘I am’ claims? Oh, nothing much just that:
1.THE BREAD OF LIFE
John 6:35 “I am the bread of Life, he who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”
2.THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
John 8:12 “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
3.I AM THE GATE
John 10:9 “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.”
4.I AM THE GOOD SHEPHERD
John 10:11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep.”
5.I AM THE RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE
John 11:25-26 “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”
6.I AM THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE
John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
7.I AM THE VINE
John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
Jesus not only made claims, he yielded results! In fact, 22 times in the gospel of John alone, He assumes divine authority over sin, sickness, and sadness!
What does this tell us? It tells me that Jesus is mans answer to hunger, hurt, disease, sickness, sadness, loneliness, emptiness and sin. Basically, if there is a question, He is the answer!
As I gaze upon the mountain range of my life, I can visualize the summit, the foothills, and all the peaks and valleys between. I can clearly see the vast number of people that are stranded in the foothills of life. As I allow Christ to take me by the hand and lead me through the avalanche, I will reach out to as many as possible, so we all may once more enjoy the view from the summit.
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