Sunday, April 24, 2011

An Empty Tomb and a Beautiful Life

Its way late...
like nearly one a.m.
I am an idiot for being awake when everyone else in this house is snoring... loudly.
(I will pay for this in the morning when I'm trying to wrangle four little ones into their matching Easter outfits, while trying to make myself look presentable and not be late.)

Tom is loudest of all, but he is to cute for me to wake him.
I would post a picture but one of the things I enjoy about married life is keeping him all to myself.
I never shared well as a child either....

I'm listening to him breathe...
to the wooshing of the ocean waves coming through the boys monitor.
To the sound of the occasional car going by, its warm enough that the windows are open.

And now I'm listening to the sound of my thoughts as they click and clack on this keyboard.
My thoughts are part of the reason I'm awake at this hour I'm sure.
That and the fact that I got to sleep in and had way to much caffeine tonight.
One of my Mom's good friends passed away this week.
She was one of those friends one whom my sister and I bestowed the title of "Aunt".
The one who cut our hair for free in her laundry room.
Who treated us to candy as liberally as a grandma.
The kind of friend you can pick up with after any length of time and it feels like you never missed a beat.

She was at my graduation, my wedding... it's simply very surreal that she's passed.
I remember her best at my Mom's age, when her grandchildren were little.
Still very young and full of life.

I am pained to think of how quickly the years slip through our fingers.
It seems like yesterday I was dying for him to pop the question....
then it seemed the wedding date would never come.
Then all we could think of was starting a family... for about eight weeks.
Once Isabella was on her way we felt nearly uncontainable anticipation.
Once she was here we looked forward to each milestone more than the last.
Soon Tommy came along, then Daniel... now here is our sweet Vivian.

And with each addition I have grown wiser... 
I feel my grip tighten as I try so desperately to hold onto them. To this time.
I remind myself more and more often not to rush through this beautiful life God has given me.

Its a strange juxtaposition I suppose to talk about trying to hold on to life on this Easter Sunday.
I love this life so much that its hard to imagine one better...
I know that's not the case for everyone though.
I think sadly that far more people are unhappy in this life.

my ultimate hope and joy should be in the promise of an eternal life.
One far better than this I am told... and I often tell Isabella when she asks.
It seems she has a lot of questions about heaven.
No pain, 
no disease, 
no war, 
no death....
life everlasting..... I can't wrap my head around it.
So I guess it shouldn't surprise me that she can't either.
She asks questions about things that seem important in her five year old mind
... can we take our house with us?
Can I have a horse?
Will God play with us? 
Will He have cool toys?

 I try to envision it.
what will Heaven be like?
I'm not sure. 
Isabella's childish questions make me wonder.
Is it whatever we want or is it that we will have no more wants... only contentment?
How is it possible that there is no sorrow, only joy?

I want to learn more and I intend to but in the end it won't matter what I think I know about the eternal life God has promised to those who accept the gift of the risen savior.

I want it.
I know God loves me and I want an eternity with Him.
That he would send His son to the cross in my place is more than enough to tell me that.

Matthew 18:3 "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, 
you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

I want to never be separated from these ones I love... or the God who graciously gave us each other.
That is my definition of Heaven I suppose, in its simplest form.
... but first to grow old with my husband.
And hopefully watch our children grow old too.
And spend our last years watching our grandkids the way we watch our little ones now...
and we'll say, don't they look like Vivi and Bella at that age?
or, do you remember when Daniel used to play with that car and Tommy would push him around?
I guess its as they say... everyone wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to go now.