For just a moment- imagine hearing the story of our Savior’s life, death, and resurrection for the first time without knowing or even thinking that He would come back to life.
I hadn’t thought of this before, or if I had in a very long time, but I could not recall this feeling in my own life. I don’t remember the story told like so, without the little feeling of having already read ahead. This came to mind whilst reading Andrew Peterson’s post this afternoon before work, the entire post was magnificent to read. However, a certain paragraph stuck out to me and impacted my thoughts in a such a way that I will now attempt to elaborate on.
“When Jesus, the perfect man, God made flesh, cries out and exhales his dying breath, the sky is black and roiling, the ground shakes, the dead emerge from their tombs and haunt Jerusalem, and the sheep scatter. But Sunday morning, more than just the sun rises. Everything changes. It’s not just a story, it’s the story. A sudden joyous turn, indeed.”
The feeling of utter despair is a unique one indeed, but it is nothing compared to the eucatastrophe (a word coined by Tolkien as mentioned in Andrew’s blog holding the meaning ‘a sudden and favorable resolution of events in a story; a happy ending’) that followed. I suppose this understanding came also from watching Transformers: Dark of the Moon for the first time last night. Something many of my close friends know about me is how deeply movies impact my thoughts and help me in understanding, especially emotions and other humans. There was a point in the movie where all truly seemed hopeless, for the first time in my memory I could not even begin to imagine how they would turn it around, for how long the movie had been already- I wondered if they would end it just so, a catastrophe. Our movie watching was interrupted at this point and it was paused, my mind churned and even despaired at the thought of the turn of events. However, shortly after we returned, it happened- everything was turned around in a hidden series of events that had been leading up to this wonderful moment, and for the first time it all seemed clear, the good would prevail once again.
Thinking back on it, this work of fiction and the emotionally wretching disaster that was turned around can not even begin to compare to the true story of Jesus Christ our Savior. I sat back for a moment and imagined it, seeing Him die, having no idea that He would ever come back. Sure, He said some things that seemed confusing, but at that moment, they were forgotten in mourning. Then, three days later, as hope had dwindled, to see Him, to hear that He was alive again. Blimey, it’s so astounding I can’t even quite imagine it myself.. What can compare to the great joy that would have rippled through my being upon seeing Him alive, hearing Him speak again.. And yet, I know a little piece of that myself.
I recall the despair and hopelessness in my own life, I recall wanting to turn to Him, but holding back secretly, I remember the moment when I decided I wanted to live for Him forever, I remember coming out of the water, being baptized, I remember seeking Him with such a great thirst for more after that moment, and living in that even still. As I recall these things, Ted Dekker’s description of the drowning in the Circle Trilogy rings clear in my mind, the feeling of drowning, only to discover that through dying, you are finally alive.
“What’s wrong with you? Are you blind? It’s life, you fools! Drown!” -Thomas, Red ~Ted Dekker
I could go on and ever on about all of this and the magnificent wonders I am continuing to discover through all Papi is showing me, but I will end with this. I look ever forward to the day when the eucatastrophe of death to this world comes, only to finally go home. Though, when I was younger, I dreaded death, I wanted to live on this earth as long as I could, now I realize the true meaning of what Paul said in Philippians 1:21
“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”