My daughter dubs me as CRAZY! (Not really, but she jokingly says so.) She tells me that I have an analogy for everything. That I can make a lesson using anything. That it doesn't matter what she says I can correlate it to something God's said.
Okay, a fault of mine (though I think 'fault' a wrong word), but I think she's right. We laugh about it. But in all seriousness, I think everything teaches. It's amazing really what one can learn in the every day things of life... most of the time without even looking.... or thinking to look. It's wild the lessons that are taught if we'll bother to see them. And it's fun, once you see something, to see a new revelation of truth shown in a modern-day-like colorful parable.
In that moment that Prissy said that, here is the illustration I made that prompted her to call me crazy: She came home telling me that she was telling a friend of hers that her parents were trying to talk her into going to Amridge University, because she could go there totally free. It wouldn't cost us anything.
The friend asked her, "Amridge? I've never ever even heard of Amridge? Where is that?"
When Prissy told him that it was on the corner of I-85 and Taylor Road, he said, "Oh. I thought that was where they cremated people."
I laughed at what he said! I know the guy. I can picture him saying it. It's priceless the imagine I have of him saying that in my head.
Amridge is a Christian University. So the first thing that popped into my mind when she told me what he said of the place was, "Well, in one respect, it is! It's a place that teaches us about God and Jesus and how we should live. And, of course, we all know that Jesus teaches us that you've got to die to really Live! ("For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Me will save it." ~ Luke 9:24) So, I assume, in some aspect, "a place where they cremate people," fits pretty accurately.
Cremation. I looked it up. It's defined as: "to reduce (as a dead body) to ashes by burning"
When looking at that definition through the eyes of 1 Peter 1:6-7 which reminds us of the "if need be" of us having to go through FIERY trials to be refined by the fire in order to reveal the resurrected Jesus in us when done... it makes sense, it seems to fit. And then, a verse that you could put right along with it, too, is in Isaiah 61 which tells us that Jesus brings beauty from ashes. Who would ever think that a cremation could look so good?
But..... that wasn't even my point of blogging today. Here's what I got on to say:
My husband often lives with a furrowed frown on his face. The phrase he says most is, "I don't know how to do it all." (Of course, none of us do... that's why we need God).
Today Tim told me (after finding out that it was going to cost $1,500 to fix my son's truck... nothing Tabor did, just the wear and tear from the miles and the age of it) that, "If it's not one thing, then it's another." I told him, "It always will be." That's life here. That's how it rolls. That's how it's done. That's how it works. There's always going be another thing that's falling apart, another thing needing to be fixed, another thing breaking down, another thing needing to be replaced, another thing to pay for, another thing...................... another thing............. another thing................... Whether we're happy with the decaying rules of it or not, no matter our resistance for the decay to happen... it's coming down, it's falling apart, it's crumbling, it's decomposing, it's dilapidating, (it's wrinkling!!!), it's decaying anyway. It'll need to be repaired, upgraded, renewed, or replaced. Until Heaven, the phenomenon of rotting will never quit.... and we'll always be caught up in the cycle of trying to prevent it.
The thing of it is, we don't only fight the ruination and decaying of our cars and our homes and the things that we own. We fight hard to keep our bodies from decaying, from wrinkling, from sagging, from aging, from wearing down, from wearing out. Pardon the language, but it ain't gonna work! Against all our resistance and want-to, it's happening anyway.
Decay. I couldn't help but run with the word. Here's what God's got to say about our bodies and its decay:
"Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later. For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who His children really are. Against its will, all creation was subjected to God's curse. But with eager hope, the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God's children in glorious FREEDOM FROM DEATH and DECAY [LIBERATED from its BONDAGE to DECAY]. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. And we believers also groan, even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, FOR WE LONG FOR OUR BODIES TO BE RELEASED FROM SIN AND SUFFERING. We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as His adopted children, including the NEW BODIES [THE REDEMPTION OF OUR BODIES that] He has promised us." Romans 8:18-23
"Therefore we do not become discouraged (utterly spiritless, exhausted, and wearied out through fear). Though our outer man is [progressively] DECAYING and wasting away, yet our inner self is being [progressively] renewed day after day." 2 Corinthians 4:16
"For he who sows to his own flesh (lower nature, sensuality) will from the flesh reap DECAY and ruin and destruction, but he who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life." Galatians 6:8
"And after my body has DECAYED, yet in my body I will see God!" Job 19:26
"Praised (honored, blessed) be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah)! By His boundless mercy we have been born again to an ever-living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, [Born anew] into an inheritance which is BEYOND THE REACH of change and DECAY, unsullied and unfading, reserved in heaven for you," 1 Peter 1:3-4
"In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the [sound of the] last trumpet call. For a trumpet will sound, and the dead [in Christ] will be raised imperishable (FREE and IMMUNE FROM DECAY), and we shall be changed (transformed). For the perishable [part of us] must put on the imperishable, and this moral [part of us, this nature that is capable of dying] must put on immortality (freedom from death), And when this perishable puts on the imperishable and this that was capable of dying puts on freedom from death, then shall be fulfilled the Scripture that says, Death is swallowed up (utterly vanquished forever) in and unto victory. O death, where is your victory, O death, where is your sting?" 1 Corinthians 15:52-55
Ah, we'll suffer "decay" in all sorts of ways.... in all the things we own and in our bodies. There's not much we can do to stop it from happening in this world, in this life. We long for our bodies to be freed from death and decay; we long for our bodies to be released from sin and from suffering. We long to be liberated from its bondage! It's in our "created in the image of God" nature... our bodies, as well as the whole earth, all of creation groans, it longs for freedom from this curse. Oh, but one day we'll be out of its reach! Death will be swallowed up! We'll be changed, we'll be transformed. From perishable to imperishable. In the blink of an eye. When Jesus comes!
No wonder we fight against it, no wonder it distresses us so.... we long, we long, we long for the full redemption from our King!