Yesterday was hard.
I have days like that sometimes. Just when I think I’ve got a handle on stuff, life throws a wrench into my plans. It’s tough to say how much is too much at any given time, but sometimes, suddenly, it just is. I’m sure you know how it goes. After a while, things add up, and suddenly the burden you bear feels like the weight of the entire cosmos, and it’s just hard.
And yes, it could always be worse. My complaints are so very tiny compared to the immeasurable suffering that goes on in this world.
But just because it could be worse doesn’t mean it’s not still hard sometimes.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Jesus this Holy Week–which is good, since, y’know, it’s Holy Week and as a Christian I should be thinking about Jesus–and what His death and resurrection really means to me. I have plenty of shortcomings, but I’m not an egregious sinner. I have dealt with sorrow in my life, but my comforts have far outweighed my pains. This Atonement of His…was it really for me? Do I really need it? Are my struggles worth His suffering?
In a word, yes.
I believe He knows exactly how much my head hurts at the end of a long day. How frustrating it is to have itchy eyes and a runny nose that allergy meds can’t seem to touch. How my back aches from hunching over to nurse a baby, from picking up endless messes, from carrying tiny but heavy bodies around. How much that ingrown nail is aggravating me and how uncomfortable those ovarian cysts can be and how badly I want to swear when I stub my toe yet again on yet another stupid toy that got left out.
I believe He knows exactly what my mama worry feels like when I google things like “103 fever in 3 year old” and “febrile seizures,” just in case. What my exhaustion feels like when I nearly cry when the baby wakes up again in the night. What it feels like when fierce love and bitter resentment coexist. What it feels like to hate taking medication to keep myself sane and to be so impossibly grateful for medication that keeps me sane. What it feels like to read the news and be sick over everything–EVERYTHING–that is happening. What it feels like to be helpless to change anything. What it feels like to be taken for granted, overwhelmed, worn out and used up.
I believe that when He bore the burden of the world, my burdens–however comparatively light they may be–were included.
I believe He knows exactly what my breaking point is because I believe He has been there.
I believe He shows me grace because, even though it could be worse and even though He knows what worse feels like, He also knows that this, right now, this is hard too.
And maybe you don’t believe in Jesus. Maybe you don’t believe in a God of any kind.
But don’t you find some comfort in knowing that someone, somewhere, sometime, has felt exactly what you are feeling? Has perfect empathy for you? Can say, “Good heavens, girl, you could use a break, because that is just the worst“?
Grace and grace and more grace. I need to offer it to others. I need to offer it to myself. I need to accept it when it is extended to me. That’s the only way to get through all this. Grace and kindness, hope and love.
Every day the sun goes down, and I bury my body in blankets and my troubles in not enough sleep. And every morning the sun rises, and so do I, to face the promise and beauty and hope of a day that has never yet existed.
There’s a metaphor in there for you, make no mistake.
Have a good Good Friday, friends, and an even better Easter.