I am up long before dawn, coffee by my side, heart churning with the day ahead. Then I check Facebook and this meme with Exodus 14:14 pops up on my feed.
It stuns me once again, the way the word of God is sharp and living. I am breathless and broken as it pierces my heart and weighs more within my mind than twelve words should weigh.
Because it's Lent and we Christian are going down.
Lent means going down the path to the cross with Jesus and we are opening our souls up to the reality of the sacrifice He made. It means falling down on our knees remembering that when we love others more than ourselves it costs us something, and that something is often pain, misunderstanding, and even unfair accusation. Lent is accepting the low place, seeing the impossible divide between man and God, and knowing that only a perfect lamb can bridge that gap.
Sometimes we turn our plowshares into swords, and other times we drop everything and lay our hands beneath a hammer and nail with Christ. Some battles require a sacrifice to be won; Lent is that kind of miracle.
Lent is a time for resting and waiting to see what God will do when the day of battle comes.
So, it's okay to lay down and rest.
Rest when the kids argue and stomp their feet. Rest when the person you love rolls their eyes at you. Rest when the lies about your intentions wound and rip at your soul. Rest when you want to quit. Rest when your marriage frays at the ends and you think it may be the end. Rest when your boss is impossible to please. Rest when you can't seem to get anything right and the flames of failure from your past lick you with hot vengeance. Rest when accusations about your actions roll over you like waves that never seem to break.
Rest because the Lord will fight for you. He will move mountains and dig trenches and lift foundations that seem too old to bear any more weight. He will breathe life into the dead places of your soul and cause dry bones to walk once more. God will push back the enemies of your soul, shine light into your darkness, and lead you beside quiet waters of peace.
Do not be afraid. Rest in the greatness of His love for you. Rest in the miracle of His sacrifice for you.
He will fight for you. He will save you. He will carry you home. Every time.