Tuesday, April 22, 2014

31

So yesterday was my 31st birthday. And even though I am so blessed with loving family/friends who called or texted or video texted or Facebook'd me, and I enjoyed an awesome night out in Atlanta with Zach… can I be real for a second and say how weird it feels? Much weirder than 30. Birthdays have always been extremely joyous occasions for me, but birthdays are different now that Lindsay's gone. I haven't written much about her passing over the past few months simply because I don't have the words. I still find it shocking when something reminds me of her absence or pierces my heart with the truth of what happened. I just still can't wrap my mind around it.

Lindsay passed away less than a month after she turned 32. This age haunts me and the reality I will soon out live her. How is that possible?! It's strange how I now measure time by her tragic death. For months I have been thinking about crossing this threshold… making it to my 31st birthday without cancer, a feat she didn't complete. I know it might seem grotesque or something, but I can't help it. It's just strange. Strange to be in this place and more of life passing by that she's not a part of.  April 21st this year is a sober reminder of last year. Last year was the last birthday we celebrated together and the last time Lindsay got me a present. It was a piece of decor - a white, resin lion head I literally BEGGED her for because I had been coveting it on Etsy. Haha She begrudgingly obliged (preferring to surprise me with something than get what I picked out), but she half way got her way by sending me surprise cookies too. :)

I miss my sister so terribly, but trust God's plan. It's funny how often we celebrate birthdays, but we choose to ignore the inevitable opposite day, our death day. That day is actually more significant. Don't get me wrong, I don't think we should be consumed by thoughts of death, but we should let it keep us grounded, keep us focused on what really matters, keep us in tune with the reality that this world is fleeting, our time is limited, and that something else is beyond this world. For those like us who believe in Jesus, we can celebrate a new perspective on death because of not only what happened at the cross, but what happened in the tomb. Jesus defeated death. He rose again. He has power over all and because he paid our debt we now are not crushed by death, but alive and with him forever. I am so grateful for this truth and that Jesus came so we may have life - life to the full, life beyond our wildest dreams that is full of love, joy, and peace and stretches the length of eternity.

This birthday, I have found a new depth of understanding to the song Christ is Risen and renewed hope in it's lyrics…

(Christ is Risen excerpt)
Christ is risen from the dead
Trampling over death by death
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave
Christ is risen from the dead
We are one with him again
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave
Oh death! Where is your sting?
Oh hell! Where is your victory?
Oh Church! come stand in the light!
The glory of God has defeated the night!

Thank you Jesus for not just another year of life, but for giving me a new life - one that is not overrun with sin, selfishness, brokenness and death, but one that is being redeemed and restored and made into beauty one day at a time. That is the best birthday present of all!

1 comment:

  1. i am so incredibly sorry for your loss.
    and this post really touched my heart - because i understand.
    when i lost my parents in high school...it wrecked me. and now i'm at the age that my mom was when she gave birth to me....its weird. and while we do have the beautiful knowledge of knowing we will see our brothers and sisters in christ again ...sometimes heaven seems so far off.

    through it all...happy birthday.
    continue to seek God out, His wisdom, love, grace, and mercy far overshadow our current paint and suffering.
    <3

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