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Saturday, April 4, 2015

CELEBRATE This Week: LXXVI


I'm glad you are here to celebrate! Share a link to your blog post below and/or use #celebratelu to share celebrations on Twitter. Check out the details here. Celebrate This Week goes live on Friday night around 10(ish). Consider it as a weekend celebration. Whenever it fits in your life, add your link. Please leave a little comment love for the person who links before you.
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I posted this on my IG feed this week and the words stuck-fast to my heart. We walk the hard to get to to the celebration. This is a truth of human existence.

We walk the hard to make it to the celebration.

This week is holy week. On Thursday I sat around a table with an eclectic mix of people. We were there for a meal, but not an ordinary meal. Thick thorns served as the centerpiece, along with unleavened bread and small cups of deep red liquid. We remembered.

Not only did we remember the last supper of the Savior, but we remembered the way God is active and alive in our own lives. I was humbled to sit at this table. Looking around, we were quite a collection of God's people -- spiffy on the outside, ragged on the inside.

A man buried alive in a farming accident six months prior sat beside me. He is evidence of a good and healing God. A young mother, after a long rainy day of meeting need after need after need of her three small children sat on my other side. She is evidence of a strong and resilient God. A man widowed too soon in life sits across the table. He is evidence of a God who offers peace and love. Those eyes I fell in love with more years ago than I can count, caught mine when we broke the bread. He is evidence of a God who offers grace and mercy. His arm rested gently on the back of the chair of the woman next to him. A woman who buried both her son and grandson in the last eight weeks. She is evidence of a God who is big enough to shoulder the ugliest this world has to offer. At the end of the table sits a woman who is making hard choices in the name of her health. She is evidence of a God who cares. There is a man who works long hours this time of year, yet takes time to remember this night, this turning point in the life of Jesus. He is evidence of a God who provides.

I am surrounded by their stories. My heart feels a holy beat. We span generations. We span occupations. We span hobbies and interests and talents. We see different ways the world spews ugly into the lives of people. We each have a different journey. Yet, we are all on the same quest to love God and love people.

We came together around the table for a spiritual meal, to remember the sacrifice of Jesus. We ate dinner together, washed feet, broke bread, took the cup. We prayed, worshiped, and remembered.

We remembered we have a good and active God. We remembered the story ends in victory.

This is the celebration of Easter. The events leading to the celebration are hard, ugly, and violent. They break my heart and pierce my soul. Easter reminds me that when the story turns hard, it isn't the end. Easter reminds me when we walk through the hard, we find the celebration. This is why I celebrate -- ragged and tattered and scarred -- because celebration isn't lack of hard, it is the wherewithal to walk through the hard.


10 comments:

  1. Blessings for you and your family Ruth on this Easter Sunday tomorrow. You're written it well, that walking through the hard.

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  2. Beautiful, simply beautiful. Happy Easter to you too, Ruth.

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  3. Thanks for your words, wonderful words for me this week. Blessings to you and your family this Easter weekend.

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  4. This is an amazing post. You've reminded us what Easter is all about - in the midst of hardship, tragedy, and death, there is a living God who triumphs over all. THAT'S something to celebrate!

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  5. We walk the hard to get to celebration -- That says it all so beautifully. There are so many dimensions of hard so many ways of celebration. Thank you for your words. They lifts us up. Happy Easter to you and your family.

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  6. Ruth, words cannot describe what I feel about the power of your blog. It is the hard that we walk in life but oftentimes, we do not know what or how the hard looks in others' lives. You allowed me to realize that there are so many with stories of struggle but that the community of believers is strong. The walk is hard but the reward is amazing. As the stomach bug violently clung to me, I kept thinking of Jesus in the Garden and the trials he went through. My pains seemed minor so I am celebrating today despite any illness that is in my house.

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  7. Beautiful! I love that you see the hard and the celebration and that they are connected. Thank you again for offering this space and your words to all of us.

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  8. I've read your post four different times throughout the day. Beautiful, beautiful words. You've wrapped up our world today -- the constant struggles and challenges, yet the light of God's grace and glory is right there in front of us to celebrate. And we are on the same quest to love God and love people. I love when you share these stories ... stories of faith and strength and healing and miracles. Because He is sovereign. Happy Easter, Ruth! He is risen!

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  9. I came across this post that I had bookmarked under keepers. As a list of needs grows longer and I grow weary again, I thank you for this reminder that we have a good and active God. We can walk through the hard ... He is our provider and helper.

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