Easter this year, for me, can only be seen through the lens of infertility. Even though we don’t get to spend the day with family, I was yearning for Easter, looking forward to Easter, much more than most years. And I didn’t spend much time dwelling on Jesus’ suffering and crucifixion. I just didn’t have the heart to. All I wanted was His triumph.
I’d like to share with you a couple of my thoughts about Easter this year.
Tyler (not his real name) is a rotund unkempt man who comes into the library daily. Despite his appearance, he’s almost childlike in the way that he just about butts to the front of the line to get a computer at the library and then to pick up his color copies of scantily clad female swimmers and gymnasts. He greets everyone he meets, whether he knows them or not. Even from a block away he’ll throw up his hand and holler a greeting to the oblivious walker. He keeps up a steady stream of conversation with himself or the librarian (though it’s often hard to figure out who he’s talking to) about baseball or the weather or his caretakers. His insatiable cheerfulness can only be dampened when the color copier is out of order and he has to print his copies on the black-and-white printer.
I’ve been continuously disappointed in myself by my dislike of Tyler. His cheerfulness irritates me. I don’t like being greeted from a block away and then trying to decide whether to yell back or wait in uncomfortable suspense until he’s closer to say hi. He’s too loud, even in the library, and I don’t appreciate all of the risqué pictures he prints off.
But at the same time, Tyler makes me think about what love really means. Loving like Christ isn’t just about reading books to my adorable nephew or feeding the wide-eyed starving child pictured on the mission organization’s newsletter. Loving the way Christ did is messy. It may involve looking ridiculous and yelling a hello from a block away or showing kindness in spite of a bad habit. Christ loved me when I was unkempt, unappealing, and all around unlovable.
Can I learn to love others like that?
Fulfilling every desire
A few quotes from the book Heaven, by Randy Alcorn, struck me yesterday:
“Nothing is more often misdiagnosed than our homesickness for Heaven. We think that what we want is sex, drugs, alcohol, a new job, a raise, a doctorate, a spouse, a large-screen television, a new car, a cabin in the woods, a condo in Hawaii. What we really want is the person we were made for, Jesus, and the place we were made for, Heaven. Nothing less can satisfy us. C.S. Lewis said, ‘The settled happiness and security which we all desire, God withholds from us by the very nature of the world: but joy, pleasure, and merriment He has scattered broadcast. We are never safe, but we have plenty of fun, and some ecstasy. It is not hard to see why. The security we crave would teach us to rest our hearts in this world and oppose an obstacle to our return to God.’ ”
When reading, I thought, what do I really want? As most of you know, right now that answer’s easy: a baby. I realized that what Randy Alcorn was saying was that all of those things, some of which are not bad in and of themselves, are really just misplaced homesickness. When I say that my heart yearns for a baby, I’m actually feeling a longing for Jesus. Only I don’t diagnose it that way.
And if that longing for a baby is really a longing for Jesus, then doesn’t it follow that when I’m with Him in Heaven or on the new Earth, I will feel fully satisfied and happy, even if I never had a baby during my lifetime? I believe the answer is yes. And that is comforting.
Steven Curtis Chapman- “Believe Me Now”
This song speaks to me. No matter our circumstances, our God is a God of love, and that has not changed.