Well Being

Miriam Webster defines well-being as “a state of being comfortable, healthy or happy.” It is a wonderful feeling when everything is going like we want it to go and we are up to any challenge that comes our way. In fact, we believe we are on top of the world and nothing can stop us, until that one thing we weren’t planning on interrupts our life and we fall flat on our face. The comfortable job and the promise of more money, a happy marriage, an ideal family, good health, or whatever it is we depend upon to buoy us, doesn’t turn out like we hoped and well-being has run out the back door faster than greased lightning. It is then we realize we have built our life on sand that washes away and not on the rock-solid foundation that will last.

Throughout our married life, my husband and I moved numerous times. We were a nomadic lot for many years, and it was hard every time we had to leave a place I had grown to love. I would get very comfortable and well-being would be a constant companion. Roots would grow into the ground of friendship and fellowship with other believers, relationships were forged and deepened, and then there would be a sudden need to relocate and the rug would be yanked out from underneath me. Once again well-being would flee the premises and leave me in a heap of grief as we pulled up tent pegs and moved to another town.

As I grow in knowledge and a deeper understanding of God, I realize that well-being isn’t going to be the solid friend that will stay around when the going gets tough. In fact, well-being will come and go at leisure, lift me up, give me a boost and then leave without any warning. God, on the other hand, doesn’t move. The Psalmist says in Psalm 18:2, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock in whom I take refuge.” From Genesis to Revelation, we read that people and circumstances change constantly but God is the same as He was, as He is and as He will be forever. In fact, I know that my circumstances will change and anything that is in my life now is temporary and is a gift to be enjoyed while I have it.

COVID-19 has yanked this sense of well-being out from under many of us. Quarantine has brought joy to some who sought to put the brakes on their harried life and to others it has ravaged any sense of well-being they had. Broken hearts, broken marriages, illness, lost jobs and income and the inability to see loved ones has brought great grief to many. We had become too comfortable in our routines and we put too much trust in what was not a solid foundation. As a Christian, I know that this will pass and the landscape of our lives will be very different. I am confident that life will be better in a different way and I am excited to see what is next. A verse I leaned on through the “nomadic” years was this from James 4: 13-15, “Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”—  yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.  Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.”  I pray that the Lord wills COVID-19 to leave us and be a distant memory, but I also trust God to use this time for the good of all and that He will grow us in our knowledge and love of Him.

The Empty Grave

I awoke with a heavy heart.  It was surreal watching Jesus hang on a cross, breathing his last breath and wondering how it could have happened.  Last week the crowds were roaring with excitement, even laying palm branches on his path and this week he is dead.  I believed he would be the savior of the world, that he would bring peace and hope to all people and now to be so confused and so sad that it came to this.

Yesterday I gathered flowers to take to his grave and I left early to place them there and to pray for his soul and mine.  The soldiers guarding his tomb seemed in a daze, like they were waking up from a night of hard drinking.  I was shocked to see the huge stone, that guarded Jesus’ body, rolled away and off its track.  Jesus’ tomb was empty and the linens Joseph wrapped his friend in were folded neatly, blood still staining them.  I dropped my flowers and ran to find his disciples, they had to know what happened, that Jesus’ body had been taken.

As I swung open the door in a panic I was stopped immediately by what I saw.  The disciples were standing around Jesus, wholly alive!  My knees gave way and I fell on my face before Him.  He is alive, just as he said he would be.  It was not a ghost but a man, flesh and blood, talking to us, letting us touch his hands and feet that had been so brutally maimed just a few days ago.  Today there are scars but no wounds, this man, God, stood before us as though he never left.