I’m sure you’ve been there before, a nurse asks you to lay out your arm so she can draw some blood from your veins.
And if you’re anything like me this means – “look the other way!”
You see, blood freaks me out. Not just a drip, but there’s something that twists my gut when I see it flowing out of me.
Most often when this is happening a doctor has ordered a test to make sure our levels are normal or sometimes he’s looking for something hidden inside of us.
Because within blood there’s a lot which can be seen . . .
I recently learned that cancer cells are the only cells which only care about themselves.
In our body, which contains all sorts of supporting organs and cells, a rogue cell can lodge itself and wreak complete havoc on us and even kill us.
It’s in moments of threat, we come face to face with being real.
As cells reorganize themselves we begin seeing life in view of death and come face to face with God, himself.
And it’s in seasons like this, grace causes us to make u-turns and fight for our lives.
We crave another chance for do-overs, to love a bit better, to get rid of our critical spirit and see souls a little deeper. A little more time to listen when our kids are spilling out their wounded heart rather than rushing on past them.
Another chance to make God a whole lot more present in our lives, even when it costs all we have.
You see, the sudden rush of a faltering test result, the unexpected loss of someone we love can wreck our life, if we let it.
But it can also make us real . . .
And being real, sometimes requires that something must die.
We sat face-to-face with Joe’s doctor that day as he described the vigilant chemotherapy he would undergo. For three hours a pharmacist described what would happen to Joe’s body as they killed the cancer cells, to rid his body of their violent raging.
As the doctor repeated their intention of killing Joe’s cells, Joe leaned in closer and asked . . .
“Doctor if you’re killing all of my cells, what’s going to bring me back to life?”
A valid question when you hear the words ‘death’ spoken multiple times over you.
The doctor replied, “Your blood will . . .”
It’s a broken thing to want to be real, but there’s something in all of us that wants to know we’re safe too. And perhaps there’s something truly okay to recognize our brokenness and yet yearn to be whole again–to trust God loves us enough to sustain our life.
Perhaps it’s here we meet Jesus most in our brokenness, as we’re feeling all busted up and like we’re falling apart.
Because Jesus is attracted to brokenness, he always was and he still is.
He sees our broken spirit as a sacred meeting place to draw into our pain and render healing.
Because for far too long we’ve covered up our wounds, pretended we’re okay. But when life calls us to be brave, we abandon holding it all together and let our brokenness come rushing out.
It’s in these hard & holy moments we embrace our suffering.
Isn’t this all we can really do when life is killing us?
Persevere through the pain and the breaking of our lives to get ourselves the healing we’re begging God for, to the place where Jesus’ blood will bring us back to life?
We often don’t know how these times of hard will all turn out.
I think that’s the hard thing of walking ourselves through them.
We don’t know if they will get better.
We don’t know if our broken marriage will be restored.
We don’t know if our prodigal child will return to God’s side.
We don’t know if our broken relationship will be healed.
We don’t know if our wounds will really heal.
We hold the shattered pieces within our souls and we offer them up to God and ask him what will bring us back to life again?
And this friend is where our hope is found.
Because although every brokenness may not find healing on this side of heaven, it can be found in the presence of our God of all comfort.
And this is what must stop the voices speaking lies over our busted up lives and it’s here we know our God who loves us deeply is healing our suffering and making us more real.
Because sometimes these things that happen in life aren’t our fault. It’s just life breaking all around us, the cost of becoming whole and even being real.
And in these moments we adjoin ourselves with the brokenness of Christ himself, the real- living son of God.
It’s here we experience our God of all comfort and peace . . . and it’s also here we fully understand his costly price of being real, the price of love.