Remembering Reality When Evil Smiles

It’s been a couple months since I’ve written anything here. I’ve been busy writing for my day job, but I’ve also just been choosing to use the time I have to be present with family and friends, some of whom are going through really difficult things.

Nothing is harder than watching the sharp edges of a broken world slice deep into tender souls.

There’s so much — so much — to grieve over in this place. From smirking politicians signing away our tiniest citizens’ right to life, to nauseating abuse that’s ignored and excused, to shattered families crushed under the debris of devastating sin, evil seems to be gloating in victory far too often.

I get it, friend — how the weight of all that isn’t right can squeeze the air from your chest. How it can drain the fight and fire from your bones. How it can leave you tired. So tired.

And this is right. This ache in the throat that chokes out all words except, “Come, Lord Jesus.”

Lament is right. Lament is worship and obedience, a yielding to the truth that the world isn’t the way it should be. Mourning over evil is an echo of the aching heart of God.

We’ve been under thick clouds in the Carolinas for so many days that it had begun to feel like the sun might have forgotten us living down here under the shadow. We drove to church this morning through a fog that swallowed the light and hid everything more than a few feet off the ground. Like most Sundays, my husband and I joined the prayer team for an hour or so before attending the service, where we circled up and did battle together once again through a stack of scribbled requests. Some of the handwriting has become familiar over time. Broken marriages. Addictions. Financial crises. Rebellious teens. Sick family members. And, today, tears over one beautiful young mama who we’ve prayed for every week for the past few years. She stepped into glory Friday night, finally whole and healed, while her husband and three sweet kids are here clinging with everything they have to a reality they can’t see yet.

But she can.

The clouds were peeling away from stripes of blue when we walked across the parking lot from the prayer room to the sanctuary. By the time we drove home after worship, the sun was glistening off Bradford pear and redbud blossoms and warming swollen maple buds almost ready to leaf. Bluebirds sat on nearly every power line between church and home, evenly spaced heralds singing songs of spring.

This winter, my friend? This frozen space of waiting and groaning and longing? It isn’t going to last.

Spring is coming.

Evil may grimace its grotesque smile. It may mock and hiss and coil for a little while longer. But behind that grinning mask is terror, because it has already lost and its season is coming to a sure end.

The buds are swelling, ready to burst into joyful leaf. Warm winds are poised to sweep away the fog, to peel grey from blue and let the sun bring life to cold, dead places.

Evil doesn’t own the victory, winter won’t stay, and our song ends in celebration instead of lament.

That beautiful young mama is standing in the realest reality tonight.

Spring is coming. Yes it is.

“My lover said to me, ‘Rise up, my darling! Come away with me, my fair one! Look, the winter is past, and the rains are over and gone.’” ~Song of Songs 2:10-11 (NLT)

2 Comments

  1. Mary Ellen
    Feb 25, 2019

    Thank you Beth for sharing this… a very much needed reminder!

  2. Jean Davis
    Feb 26, 2019

    Appreciate your writings! Always good! Thanks for posting!

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