I’ve been having a bit of a spiritual awakening, if I can call it that, and I’m enjoying the newness and the freshness of thinking (and rethinking) upon the stories from Bible which have given me so much life in the past.
This isn’t a surprise as I have come to expect this whenever I encounter the living texts.
One text that I’ve been recently meditating on is
Genesis 22 which is as hardcore as it gets:
After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”
So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac.via ESV.org
If you read over this too quickly, especially if you’ve read or heard this story before, you’ll miss the incredible opportunity to just sit with the text, to sit and be fully present with Abraham as he considers what the God of the Universe has asked him, the absolute gravity of the entire situation and the decision that is now before him.
Between the second-to-last sentence and the final line quoted above is lifetime of, what I would imagine, is nothing short and shy of the purest forms of agony and earth-shattering heartbreak.
That must have been the darkest night of his life. Sleepless doesn’t even begin to describe it, even and especially when you know the ending to the improbable story.
I have never been tested to the level of Abraham and I pray that I never will because I do not believe that I have what it takes to do what Abraham ultimately chose to do.
And as I look upon my own children, especially my little boy who has opened up a new part of my already-full heart in such a unique and special way, the thought makes me weep.
We all will be tested, it’s coming. And, for some of us, it already has.
We will survive. We know that to be true. It doesn’t make the decisions less difficult and it certainly doesn’t mean that our awareness will allow us to bypass or avoid them.
What it does mean is that you can prepare for them so that when they do arrive, you’re equipped to walk through them with hope.
What equipment do you and I really need? That’s easy: Family, friends, and a community that will be there with you when the darkest of nights seem to never end.
It’s just too dangerous to go alone.