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Sometimes, we journey to the dark so we can be moved by the Light. We trace the furthest boundary lines behind our eyes. We get deep next to demons, weighed down from evil within and without. And when warmth first touches cheek or shoulder or the back of our knees, the weight may not lift but there is relief. . . . And it is the same magic— to feel Light's warmth after a cold night or a long stretch of summer, it is the same glory— to be reading the lectionary in a Home Depot parking lot with sleeping car seats or having a morning cup of coffee on the front stoop with my co-laborers. . . . Somehow, God has anchored the pale blue ombre sky above me like an endless umbrella. He covers and cloaks with Light and sometimes I have to go deep in dark to feel it's warmth. . . . Morning Call:  Lamentations 1:12 Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if  there is any sorrow like my sorrow which was brought upon  me, whom the Lord hath afflicted. . . . Opening Prayer:  Loving Father, as we journey with your Son in this week of remembrance and hope, help us to experience and receive you and your love for the world more clearly. Transform us by the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit. In the name of your Son, our Lord, we pray. Amen. #holyweek #notredame #outofthedarkness #intothelight
Naked morning comfort and I'm just basking in the humble light of it. They wear all their affections like clothes and this one makes me melt because they aren't so attached to their wholeness. They are ready to be broken to make peace with one another -- more ready than me, so I take notes. . . . The making of our Peace broke Him, completely. His humble persistence was full of glory because He was God, not because it looked good. Making peace means breaking pride, breaking selfish gain, breaking the sin inside that so easily entangles us, and breaking the power of the sin outside that so deceives us. . . . #newblog #momswhowrite #writersofinstagram #motherhood #siblings #siblingsasfriends #braveryofsmalllife #Godseconomy #kitchen #atlanta #family #teamkolts #teampixel #teampixelnofilter #nofilter #morningglow #morning #liveauthentic #kids #georgia #southernsummer
"Look, Mom! Edelweisses!!!!" And she passed the peace to me with flower weed stems and smooshed petals. The brisk tickle of Spring wind swept my elbows as I reached out to receive. . . . And it got made again, Peace. Established with delicate weed offerings and vulnerable outstretched hands, peace mended for a moment the breaks of the morning. The Great Deceiver's attempts to put us at odds— to wound one other with war words thrown in defense and pride— got smooshed underfoot in the backyard. . . . And I thought of Jesus making literal Peace, because the world doesn't allow it to come and be kept. Peace must be forged with active rebellion against the forces within and without that would rather war. We are a peace breaking people made in the image of One who carries Peace in his character, One who made Peace for us forever with God so that we can make peace today exactly where we are. . . . "For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility." Ephesians 2:14 . . . And the little child shall lead us.
I studied Job's friends pretending comfort, while withholding kindness and refusing to revive a weary spirit. I taught about the people in Jerusalem spreading their coats out like a royal carpet for the King of glory to ride in on a borrowed mule. I learned about the invisible God we try to force fit our image but our invisible spirit is made in His. I chased my littles in circles in the newly cut backyard and followed Foster's gaze to find birds high on budding branches. I heard Zella yell to our neighbor two houses down to move her apple trees far away because our juniper tree has a bad disease that could infect it. I wrestled through pride and failure and defending ideas. I made a very late afternoon cup of coffee and cooked with my baby strapped on my back. I snuggled my girl and gave her choices while praying she would choose right. On the first day of Spring. . . . We rode to Bible study, the kids and me, in an Uber because I ran the battery down on the van. I caught the sun glory streaming in to hit all our faces in the backseat as Zella chatted with the driver about music, imaginary children, and her preference to not wear socks and shoes. Our Wednesdays have so much Bible in them — sometimes nothing connects and I arrive at the end with mush brain and then sleep in my day clothes. But yesterday, I fell into bed so thankful that there are constellations in all these bits of Light. He is holding all things together and sometimes He connects dots and reveals a special glimpse of the glory of it all. #writersofinstagram #momswhowrite
My brows converge over my nose and my face squints against the dark. I pray, "O, God. O, God." I lay flat on my bed between two littles and take a deep breath that reaches my shoulders and sides and ankles "O, God." . . . It feels like Spring shouldn't come, that it is so *wrong* here that Lent should last forever. That, though our hope for Spring is strong, it is mostly about escape and not about salvation. We have made ourselves at home in winter, comfortable with the frosted ground under our hibernation. Our evil isn't seasonal. It isn't an epoch, a phase, a time period. It is in us— bones, marrow and evil. And we don't even want out. A Stockholm syndrome sickness that's eating us up from the inside but we refuse rescue. . . . The mercy of the Lord comes anyway, budding trees and blooms for the just and unjust. He woos us— relentlessly— out of our captivity with kindness. He calls us to repent of our soul's winter so we can finally see and taste His Spring. He calls us out of shadow and into marvelous light where our winter is exposed and we can squint to see our salvation. And we can know even a little bit more the extent of His glory and the depth of His grace. . . . Spring is coming and we are Easter people, but today there is lament. #light #shadow
Why is it that when we talk about the beginning of the United States it's always "when we founded this great nation" but when we talk about slavery it skips to the Civil War and it's always, "they were fighting to keep slavery in the south." The same humans who founded this nation bought humans and made them slaves in it. And today, for that, I mourn. . . . Every human made in the image of God is the same amount of invaluable. The same amount of mysterious wonder is knit up in our bones, from those first moments curled up in the womb. Lord, have mercy on us for acting like it is not so. . . . . . #americanlent #lentenrose #whiteprivilege #slavery #lent #lament #foundingfathers #letstalkaboutit #repentanceproject #didyouknow #spring #teamkolts #liturgy #reflection #monday #teampixel #atlanta #blackandwhite #slavetrade

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post-Easter, pre-Eternity

Most people know the tension between living salvation on this earth and living eternal salvation in heaven as the “already, not yet.” To reflect on this tension after Easter seems fitting, because all of history points to Christ’s victory over the grave yet all of creation is still groaning for the completion of salvation (Romans 8). Today I am calling it post-Easter, pre-Eternity.

I spent yesterday almost entirely in laughter. The day felt bathed with it. I am convinced there is something beautiful to be found in abandoning yourself to a good fit of ridiculous laughter. Yesterday, with friendships too new to feel so “old,” I scrunched up my face and held my sides in a crazy fit of full body laughter. This, too, seems fitting to follow my Easter celebration. In fact, I imagine (call me a fool) that some people let out awkward laughter when they saw Jesus after news of the empty tomb got around. Everyone stood gawking and pointing (I imagine) and then there were those few whose laughter could be heard spilling all over the silence. Sometimes awe, wonder, joy, mischief, and glee can be communicated no other way.

So, there’s this tension. Salvation is here, but salvation is coming.

We are wrapped up in the glory of what Christ gained in his victory over the grave. We are bathing in it like I imagine joyful laughter bathed Christ’s post-resurrection steps. Tim Keller says, “The happy ending of the Resurrection is so enormous that it swallows up even the sorrow of the Cross.” Even our sorrows drown in the ocean of joy called Christ’s resurrection.

Yet, we all know we’re living on this side of eternity. We recognize black-clad funerals and cold, gray gravestones as the painful pattern of our mortality. We are certain no one has found or ever will find the secret to living forever. We are (in our most honest moments) more certain of the fact that living forever in this present world would be filled only with anguish and affliction.

Today, I am claiming a common denominator. For those of you who know me, I am in no place to use a mathematical reference and even further from qualified to stretch it into something helpful for my ideas. Yet, here I go. A “denominator” is the bottom number of a fraction (like 2 in 1/2). A “common denominator” is when the bottom numbers of fractions are the same (like 3 in 1/3 and 2/3). In other words, I think post-Easter, pre-Eternity is kind of like 1/2 and 1/2 – two parts of a whole redemption story. The common denominator? I wonder if it is glory. I believe Christ’s death and resurrection is all about bringing glory to God. I also believe our anticipation for Eternity is about bringing glory to God. This whole beautiful mess of a redemption story, from start to eternal finish is about glory going in the right direction – toward a most Awesome, Merciful, Compassionate, Just King.

In our (especially recent) post-Easter state, we are giving God the glory for the magnificent and finished work of Christ. In our pre-Eternity state, we are giving God the glory for a secure future in His presence. Whew! Here are two songs that come to mind when I think post-Easter, pre-Eternity. Sing along with them and let God’s glory fill the skies! Join the angels in this forever song! Please don’t miss the rich references to the Old Testament and how God is glorified in the ways His sovereign plan was revealed and His name praised long before it came to pass.

Skeleton Bones by John Mark McMillan

Peel back our ribs again
and stand inside of our chest.
We just wanna’ love you
We just wanna’ love you

Peel back the veil of time
And let us see You with our naked eyes
We just wanna’ love you
We just wanna’ love you

We want your blood to flow inside our body
We want your wind inside our lungs
We just wanna’ love you
We just wanna’ love you

Skeleton bones stand at the sound of eternity
On the lips of the found
And gravestones roll
To the rhythm of the sound of you
Skeleton bones stand at the sound of eternity
On the lips of the found
So separate those doors
And let the son of resurrection in.

Oh let us adore the
Son of Glory drenched in love
Open up your gates before him
Crown Him, stand Him up

Holy is the Lamb by Coffey Anderson


I saw the Lord, seated on the throne
And the train of His robe filled the temple
And angels sing all around me
And the song that they sang was so simple

All they cried was:
Holy, holy is the Lamb
Holy, holy is the Lamb
Holy, holy is the Lamb
Holy, holy is the Lamb of God

let LOVE fly like CrAzY

2 comments on “post-Easter, pre-Eternity

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