We, Us, Them: It is all the same.
How many of us can admit to ever saying the words, “Why me?” We cry out wondering how it could possibly be us that must face tragedy or challenges in our lives. On the flip side, there is the other group that says, “ Why me?” who experience great deals of joy and breakthrough in their life. It is hard to believe that life can be filled with so pain, yet simultaneously filled with so much joy. It is as though we have two groups with a false understanding of their identity. The first group has a false level of importance mixed in with high levels of despair and hopelessness. A combination that leaves one with a blind eye to a good future. The other group is filled with those that lack a vision for their identity and have a false humility. It is often spurred from blind eyes from a bleak past that leaves little room for vision of a hopeful present.
Today is the day for that third question, “Why not me?” This is the group that sees their identity in Christ, sees the journey as a human as both gratifying and humbling. In the kingdom of heaven there are no lines of who gets it all and who gets nothing. In fact, it is said that the last will be first and the first last. The deeper meaning behind this is that Jesus is unconcerned with where we stand in a line. It is merely impossible to go through life unscathed. It is also irrefutable that Jesus is madly and deeply in love with each and every one of us. He did not die on the cross for the front of the line and more than he did for the back of the line or the middle.
The interesting thing about life is that we often try to escape the human form, when Jesus himself came to teach us how to live in it. It is as though our bodies our this miraculous life giving force that He created that we get to have the full experience that he had. If God did not have purpose for your human life- the pain, the suffering, the traumas, and the joys, the triumphs, and the celebrations he would not have sent His son through the Virgin Mary. Instead he would have sent the Holy Spirit blazing and the most beautiful love story to ever have been written would have been a ball of flames. The story of Christ would have never been written, the grace and mercy of the Lord would never exist, and we would never have been given a blueprint for how to navigate life. It has never been a story of “ Why Me” but rather a story of “ Why not?” It when we see the gift in the present challenges that we will have a grid for the joy.
One who is willing to lose it all openly and freely is the one who is willing to gain the gifts of heaven openly and freely. On the contrary, the one who is only willing to lose some, will only every gain some. Those who have rooted down in the pits of hell on earth, will experience the intensity of the glory of heaven in greater measure. He blesses us all, it is just a matter of what we do with the blessings. The first on earth being last in heaven is the powerful statement that those who experience the great losses in life will be able to first and foremost experience the grandiosity, mystery, and joy of heaven that much more. It is not that the first on earth will not experience heaven, it is that they may never have a grid for the wonderment of the heavenly experience here on earth. One touch of heaven and no longer will being the first on earth matter. So today, rather than crying out the words why me, let’s see that we are no better nor worse than any other human being and sit in his kindness, peace, and mercy with the words why not.
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