Friday, April 29, 2016

The Happiness of Sadness

Have you ever been thankful for sadness?  Today I am.

Sadness is typically an emotion I fear and hide.  Maybe not knowingly but when I see it coming down the street towards my emotional house I get that mental knot in my stomach and try to board up the windows and doors of my house so sadness wont feel welcome here.  Then I stand in my dark house silently behind my unwelcoming door, as quietly as a mouse hoping it wont know Im there and if it does Ill pretend long enough, that sadness will grow tired of waiting and knocking.  And just go away.  Then I will tell myself as I walk away from sadness's door, "Thats right Shannon.  It wasnt really sadness.  Anger, yes!  Silly woman, not sadness!"

Today is different.  I dont know why.  It seems odd, even to me.  I have chosen, chosen to make sadness my friend.  Today instead of pretending to be busy and not at home I opened my door and welcomed sadness at the street.  Today I will walk togethor with sadness.  I will listen to what she has to say.

She's nearing my house, coming down my street.  I notice the day.  Someone is here.  I sense it.  There is a presence in the day, all around me that is much greater than sadness or even me or my will.  But wait, who's that with her?  Today she walks with someone.  Im straining to see....It's Jesus!  He is my friend.  I had forgotten, He promised me that I would never have to walk with sadness alone.   "You see", Jesus says to me, "sadness isn't as terrible and scary as you may have thought.  I'm here," He says.  "I'm here.  Take My hand.  Lets walk this togethor."

He holds my hand.  With us still, is sadness.  Tears stream down my checks.  Jesus smiles sweetly and begins the walk.  He is calm, sure, unafraid, confident.  I am broken and in pain.  My heart feels as if my chest will burst.  I look to Him and he smiles gently and begins to tell me a story.  Sadness grasps my other hand tightly.  I begin to sob and continue on.  He tells the story of the love of His father for me, his life, His death, His ressurrection, all for me, for my pain and the pain of the one who caused my pain.  Wait...there is beauty all around I realize!  My heart is filled with pain but all around me I begin to see and sense the father.  He is here.  He is here.  We are walking.  We are walking and soon I notice that now we are four.  Hope is with us!  No longer is sadness my only friend.  No longer are my tears only for sadness and her pain, but tears of thanksgiving begin to stream down my face.  Hope as arrived.  She walks next to Jesus.  She doesnt take hold of me but she is there.  Letting me see her and saying with her eyes, "Im with you now."

Jesus grasps my hand tighter and draws my attention back to Him.  We walk on.  He tells us a story about Heaven and when I get to come live with Him.  Who's that walking toward us?  Is it, could it be, love?  And...forgiveness?  "No, Im not ready yet!"  I look to sadness as we all walk.  She holds my hand.  She assures me that she is with me for now but soon, very soon Jesus will ask me to welcome love and even forgiveness to walk with us.  Sadness says, then, she will go away and love and forgiveness will take her place as my companions.  I am thankful.  I am not ready for that yet!  For now, I know that I need to walk with sadness, lean on her, learn from her.  I will listen to the voice of Jesus and rest in His confidence.  I will see Hope and know that Sadnesses presence doesnt mean death, destruction or eternal depression.  She promised that she would not be there forever and Hope makes it true.