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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Mourning to Joy

[Jacob] . . . exclaimed: "My son's tunic! A wild beast has devoured him! Joseph has been torn to pieces!" Then Jacob rent his clothes, put sackcloth on his loins, and mourned his son many days. Though his sons and daughters tried to console him, he refused all consolation, saying, "No, I will go down mourning to my son in the nether world . . . " (Genesis 37:33-35).

It would be more than twenty years
before Jacob learned Joseph
was alive.

During those decades
Jacob lived
with the wrenching memory
of a blood-stained tunic,
and the belief that his son
was dead.

I hate death.
I mourn the grave that robbed me
of my beloved.

My father-in-law.
My step-dad.
My brother-in-law.

I thank God
I have not had to mourn
my children.
Seeing one in a coffin
would tear my heart
the rest of my life.
I won't permit that image
to even linger in my imagination.

Death. Mourning.

And then I think
of God.

What grief is like His
when we choose
another path
and die outside His arms?
What anguish is like His
when so many of us
turn away?

But what joy is like His
when even one repents
and reunites
through the blood
of Golgotha's cross?

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