One of the most powerful lessons that came out of Jesus’s crucifixion is the following…
Out of the most barbaric and merciless death of a physical body emerges a spiritual reality that lives on forever.
As Jesus said, let the dead bury the dead. The physical body was brutally tortured and executed. But out of that very real death arose a giant step forward in human consciousness that transcended the ages (and only a few to this day have actually embraced). Out of his death came the glaring example and demonstration of what the love of God looks like in the physical world.
Open. Vulnerable. Weeping. All-embracing. Free.
And so I’ll turn the question over to you…
What about you will live on forever after your physical body turns to dust?
Maybe it’ll just be the time you gave to the woman in line at Kohl’s who wanted to drone on and on about her grandkids and how they’re doing so well in school and how they take after their grandma and you stand there with a smile and listen and nod and are the only human soul who’s been present with her as much as a part of you wants to turn and walk away because you have so much to do…
Maybe it won’t be as epic as Jesus (and that’s okay, I mean, we can’t all spark a worldwide movement that essentially rearranges life on the planet). But what will live on in the hearts and minds of your friends, loved ones, or even strangers you’ve met over the years?
And now, let’s get meta for a minute…
What about your past will you allow to live on in your eternal present? What kind of psycho/spiritual baggage are you lugging around with you wherever you go? Is it heavy and defeating or light and enlivening?
My guess is, thanks to the nature of the human mind which likes to grip onto the negative, you’re carrying around the former.
We must be steadfast to bury the dead with the dead. Those physical things that happened, those things you said and didn’t say — let them lie there in the graveyard of time as they rot into the nothingness from which they came.
Centering prayer is my process for letting this heavy stuff go. In silence, it comes up. As much as my brain wants to grab it tightly and roll it around and around in my head, I must open myself and allow the divine to take it off of my hands. I mean, I sure don’t know what to do with it, so I have to trust that she does.
Today’s question is this…
What lives on about you to others and to yourself?
The things we worry the most about — the things we most regret — are also the things that vanish quicker than smoke if we just let them.
What lives on are the eternal things. The acts of unconditional love, mercy, and grace. The qualities of God himself.
P.S. It’s crazy how little we have control over this stuff. It’s almost as if the harder we try, the more we muck things up. The things we think are the best in the short-term are almost always the worst. Such is the nature of grace.