I’m Crying Again.

My Kids Are Used to It.

This time it’s a Kings of Leon song.  I don’t even really know why.  I’m driving Jake to his Full Orchestra concert (he plays percussion), and it feels big. And good.  And I’m proud of him.  And I’m proud he picked Kings of Leon and wants to start using his money to go to concerts and wants me to make sure Jude earns enough money to go too.  These things.  These kids.  We have been through a lot together.

I cried in church last Sunday.  Not a church-worshipy-type-of-cry…silent and beautiful.  No.  A shoulder shaking sob.  Face in my hands and my husband whispering, “Are you going to be ok?” Please no one notice the nervous breakdown two rows behind the youth group. It’s a sweaty, sobbing 41- year- old woman…nothing pretty to see here.

Life is Good.

I Can Barely Handle it…

My best friend, Jody, and I sat on longhorns this Saturday. For real. Big old longhorn cattle. Cute dresses and boots at Wild Onion Ranch.  We danced to some band singing every song imaginable. We sang too loud and laughed too hard.  I wore eyeshadow and lipgloss and floored my daughter.  I carried a sparkly purse and wore boots bought at a garage sale.  I held hands with my husband under the table and talked about brisket and macaroni and cheese and making dreams happen and kids and houses and pigs and puppies.  All the good things.  Really really good things. It was a beautiful night.  And I have a million pictures no one is ever allowed to see…and I will treasure them forever.

Y’all.  Sometimes life keeps handing you lemons, and you have so much dang lemonade your head is swimming…It’s hard to see all the fruit for all the trees and have some just real good days.  With good people.  It’s hard to believe when Jesus hands you some oranges and cherries and a few pomegranates too (because Jesus is crazy like that)…It’s hard to let go of all your lemons and all that lemonade and believe a smoothie or two might be in your future.  It’s hard to live the good life.  Even when it’s all you have left.

Jesus Keeps Asking Me to Live.

And I Think I May Have Forgotten How.

I’ve been hanging out with Lazarus.  Seriously.  It started about 6 months ago and I can’t get away from the guy resurrected by Jesus. He doesn’t say a word throughout the account in John 11.  There is no declaration from Lazarus or some big, long explanation of what took place inside the tomb before Jesus calls his name.  How can you ever explain what it was like to died?  How can you ever shed light on what it was like to want to live?  To want a different outcome?  To want the happy ending?  And you walk into that valley of the shadow of death…And it is over.  By all accounts Lazarus came to the end of a tough road. And we all know how to handle endings.  And when your life has been made up of lots of endings over the last decade…sad and hurtful…hard to explain and full of quiet glances in your direction…words of wisdom and encouragement…Well, you get really good at wrapping things up and walking with a limp…or a crawl…or just being dragged along. And then Jesus hands you resurrection.

Resurrection Reality:

It Only Happens When You Die.

Y’all. You can have revival, but you can’t just HAVE resurrection.  And, let’s face it, revival is awesome, but resurrection is life changing. We never ask for resurrection for ourselves.  We get it.  We know the price is too high.  We lose too much to get there.  But man, when we are there…what do we do now?  And I am there.  For all general metaphors, the last decade killed me…lots and lots of pieces of me…and then the final blow took me under.  And when the only place you can reside is a tomb with Jesus…And you can let all the people pray on the outside, but you just can’t join them…And time passes and stones get rolled away.  And your name gets called.  How do you walk out and live again?  How?  How do you look at all the faces and say, the worst thing imaginable happened…And it’s time to live again.

I guess I should be honest here.  It’s not the living that is hard…It’s the leaving the tomb that may be the death of me.  It’s belief and hope in better days ahead.  It’s stepping out into the sunlight and not throwing on sunglasses or sunblock or even a cute sunhat to shield us from all the good. And knowing the tomb is behind me…And there are still so many days ahead. Just good days.  In the YES-that-was-an-amazingly-good-day type of day.

Jesus Only Called Lazarus Once.

How Many Times Can He Call My Name?

We are buying a house in Buda, Texas, y’all.  Can you believe it?  It sits on three acres.  And when I drive by it I see myself drinking coffee on the back porch with my kiddos in the summer. There are deer at the edge of our property…y’all…And I’m dreaming again. Not the little terrified dreams either…No…the really big dreams.  The old dreams of writing and painting rooms and kids growing up and going to college and a pool someday and a party barn (so important y’all)…I can hear some whispers from my Jesus…before lots of crappy endings…whispers I heard before piles of life and lemons got in the way.  And I can barely stand it.  And y’all, I’m scared and nervous and full of what ifs…But let me say this as the sun glares into every corner of this old tomb…I haven’t been this excited in years.

Jesus is BIG y’all.

Big Enough to Call My Name Too.

“Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth wrapped around his face. (John 11:43-44)