2 Cor. 5:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
I confessed to my sister on the phone recently that I feel too deeply sometimes, that I take the “bear one another’s burdens” command too close to heart and think that their job loss, very sick child and personal health concerns and subsequent outcomes are completely dependent on my prayers for them. She agreed that she struggles with that too.
We are sensitive souls, she and I.
I think I understand what God may be working out in each of these individual cases in a very skewed human sense. You see, He desires that we look to the eternal, not the temporary, our trials are the groaning of our flesh.
2 Cor. 5:2 Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked.
We must be fed, we desire to be healthy, whole. But looking at our spiritual clothing, you know, the stuff that’s completely invisible to the human eye, we find freedom. Even though outwardly we are wasting away, inwardly, when we check those needs at the foot of the cross, WE are, the real us are being renewed day by day, it’s like getting a brand-new outfit every single day and each time it gets better and better and better.
Right now, I’m reading a good friend’s book about forming close mommy relationships and she shares in one of her chapters about her years of struggle with infertility that ended with the miscarriage of two of her babies, and her best friend at the time was pregnant with her third child. My friend said, not even once, did she complain about her pregnancy, and we know, you guys how yucky and just blech those 9 months can be. This friend held her friend up, spiritually, emotionally, physically, and I know you couldn’t see it from the outside, but both their spirits were being renewed through this process.
2 Cor. 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
You see, our flesh is burdened for a heavenly now, where things are perfect, just and true. We don’t just feel the groan, we audibly emit the groaning, that, in many ways, is the sweet refrain of our souls being tuned to God’s melody.
In just this last year, my daughter has lost all three of her great grandmothers, all, coincidentally at the ages of 91 and 92. Two were seriously ill for years before Jesus took them home. It’s impossible to understand why the languishing, but my daughter asked me the other day after she returned from her dad’s grandmother’s funeral, “Did Nan and Grandma L ever meet each other?” Yes, they probably did at our wedding.
And we decided that right then that they very well could be meeting for a second time.
2 Cor. 4:18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.