Sarah posted this during mission trip this summer and preached on it not long after.
It really resonates with me because it covers everything. Pretty much everyday either sways to lung-breaking or to faith-stretching. For a lot of us, this week was a lung-breaking one. Me too.
It reminds me a lot of another week I’ve had. A lot of our youth had a friend named Jonathan Baggett. He was a little older than us, and on Student Leadership Team. He was smart, he was funny, no girl in our youth group could lie and tell you she didn’t think he was pretty. But most of all, he was inspiring. Not because of anything that happened to him. But because of everything that happened from him. Jonathan was so not afraid of ministry, or his call as a Christian, or of just showing his faith in whatever he did. He had a light. He was diagnosed with leukemia and died a few months later-in October. It hit us really hard. I remember standing up during joys and concern and Lacy and I asking you to pray for his family before we went into the bath room and cried. and cried. and cried. I we asked each other, “why did it have to be him that got sick?”-”He could have done so much!” At that time, we didn’t know, that he had already done so much. Jonathan had light. Everything that surrounded him was illuminated by God. CLAY POT SCRIPTURE. stuck in my mind is Glen Lake. My first time at Glen lake, i went to Summer Camp with Katie Donaldson. The theme was being transformed. We had all these wonderful transformations, being free to alive, being blind to seeing clearly. And on Friday we talked about the one I will never forget. Dead to alive. Our small group was a calm coloring activity. We were just supposed to write or draw about someone we knew that had died. We all cried, and cried, and cried. Mourning each other’s pain. Girls we had met four days ago, we were sobbing over their cats who had been hit by cars and their grandmothers we never knew. Because that’s a kind of pain we had all felt. And as soon as we saw the expressions on their faces as they one-by-one talked about their lost loved ones, our heart strings tugged in their direction. And we knew. It feels miserable. But there is something beautiful in it. During worship soon after, the speaker got up there and said something that I have always remembered. “I’m so glad I get to die. I’m so overjoyed that I can leave all of this behind!” He patted his stomach. “When i die, I won’t have any obesity or diabetes or heart disease or back problems or asthma or cancer or toothaches or nosebleeds or any of it! I get to leave it all behind.” It’s wonderful. it’s like we’re all walking jack-o-lanterns. We only last so long, but we have an everlasting light. A light that makes us more than what we really are. A light that outlines our best features and makes us really worth existence. The light is what does that At night, it’s all been dancing in my head. I’ve been thinking about Roxy and Jonathan and Glen Lake and pumpkins. And all of it at the same time is lung-breaking. THE UPHILLS ARE LUNG BRAKING… but you can’t stop there. But if that’s why you stop you’re missing out on the LIGHT! We are not alone. God is with us. NOT just watching over us. those things are different. We not only have a Heavenly Father who watches over us-who guides the wave and winds around us, who hear our prays and knows our hearts. But we have a spirit within us. Inside of us. God is closer to you heart than yo are. God is not only in Heaven but is in you! I get so upset sometimes. So caught up. So worried that I’m not doing a good enough job. And I’ve recently realized that Light is what I’ve been looking for. I thought I wanted to live a glittering, rhetorically rich, life. I thought all this time I was striving to just love as much as I could. To change as much as I could. To have gracious Providence fall off of me like I’m a melting popsicle. To be the best that I could. But I wanted to be Light all along. All of the heart-breaking things that seem to attack us are nothing compared to the Light that is within us. GOD is in us. WITH us. All the time. It’s lung-braking, it’s faith-stetching. but we are not alone. God is with us. not only looking over us, but truly WITH us. We get to leave everything except the Light behind. The Light is the important part. Light is what rises above EVERYTHING ELSE Light is what traces our best. Light is what remains when all else fails. light is what will And Light is what leads us Home.