Can the world stop…for just a minute?
One of the hardest parts of life is when you go through something really hard, and you just want the world to stop – even if just for a minute. But the world doesn’t stop. This big green ball keeps spinning, life keeps moving on with or without you, and it can leave you feeling incredibly disconnected, alone, and the pain made more severe.
We have all been through challenges and can most likely relate to this feeling. At least I know I can. You experience the sudden death of a loved one, your spouse leaves you, you unexpectedly lose your job and have nothing to fall back on, …the list of traumatic events could go on and on. Without belaboring this, I’m sure you get the picture.
What CAN we stop?
We can’t control the world and stop it from spinning. We can’t control whether or not anyone stops their world for you, but we can absolutely choose to stop our own world and be fully present in someone else’s pain.
That is what Jesus did for Mary and Martha when Lazarus died; He stopped His world, went to them and joined them in their place of pain. (yes, I know He didn’t stop His world immediately, nor do you have to react immediately. There is a time and season for everything under the sun)
But Jesus could have easily sent His condolences and went on with His life. He could have even raised Lazarus from where He was and not missed a beat. But that is not what He did. He went to them, at the right moment when all hope was lost, and entered into their pain. He wept with them, not because He had lost hope too, not because He wasn’t sure Lazarus would wake up. No, Jesus knew what was about to happen and the joyous reunion that was about to take place. But he wept with them anyway.
Because sometimes we just need to have someone stop the world and melt with us; to have someone mourn with us, to join in our pain, in our disappointment. To make us feel like what we are experiencing is valid. To know that someone cares enough to stop, listen, and be with us so we don’t feel isolated and alone. Not to try and cheer us up and stop the tears, not to tell us what we need to do to fix it, but to just be with us.
What I did today…
Today I did that with my son. He received some bad news yesterday and it took a blow to his hopes. I could easily tell him it is all going to be ok. I could tell him how God has another plan. I could steer him towards the next thing, but that isn’t what he needed today. Today he just needed to be, and he just needed me to be with him. We went to lunch and talked about anything, everything, and nothing really. I just wanted to be present with him where he was at; loving him unconditionally and needing nothing in return.
And, when the time is right, hope will arise just as Lazarus did, and we will share in the joy of new life. But for now, even though I know what comes next and even though I hear the rumblings of death’s loss on the horizon, we mourn…..together.
I will stop the world and melt with him…..because he matters.