Go Outside

Remember the song from Robbie Seay so long ago?

The lyrics are devastatingly simple.

Go outside, and praise the God
Who mapped the stars out in the sky
Gather round with those who love and sing,
He is our God. He is our God…
No one should be left out.

Feel the simplicity of it? I hadn’t thought of those lyrics in years, so it came as a slight surprise when I couldn’t get the melody out of my head yesterday.

Except, we were sitting outside on the deck of a playground, tucked away between giant freeways with massive construction zones. It wasn’t a particularly special afternoon, just a pretty one. We had our team meeting on Tuesday afternoon, just like always, but instead of our usual spot, we went outside.

There wasn’t as much business talk, because sometimes the outside demands reflection. Like that moment sitting on the edge of the ocean, and suddenly everything else, everything that used to matter, sort of flits away with the foam of the great sea.

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On a much, much smaller scale, that’s how it felt yesterday. I sat with co-workers (friends) and we shared about life. Difficult moments, hard truths, and quiet cries of “this is not how I thought it would be.”

We are not alone. Somewhere, deep down, behind the pride, the insecurities, the facades and the masks of all humankind, that same cry aches to be heard.Β The sheer weight will not be suppressed forever. If not now, then soon…

Remember the Gosnell story? Turns out, it’s not as unique as it was thought. Life News published this article today (use discretion if you read). Over 80,000 people have died in Syria. Refugees are flooding the borders. A family here lost their 4 year old child after a life of immense suffering. Children wander from a loving family. Girls are treated like property; they are bought, sold, and trafficked. This happens overseas in slums, and right in our backyards. Live in a city? The trafficking stats are higher.

Brokenness is real. Be wary of continual mirth (ecclesiastes 7:2-4). See also the entire book of Ecclesiastes.

The Great Gatsby came out last weekend, and I’ve been excited for months. The book was dark and thought-provoking, but I couldn’t wait to see the glamour of the 1920s portrayed in modern-day hollywood style. And oh, it was. Β But what makes the story great is the tangible, honest weight of depravity throughout. Even amidst the extravagant “everything-one-could-want” lifestyle portrayed, it’s felt. Something went wrong.

Something went terribly wrong.

There, in the acknowledgement of the brokenness, is the only place we find hope and life and peace. Jesus did not come for the healthy, but for the sick (mark 2:17). Why would anyone ask to be saved if there’s nothing from which to be saved?

The deepest hope reigns supreme. Take heart. In this world we will have trouble, but He has overcome the world. (John 16:33)

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Sometimes the best thing to do really is to go outside, and cry out to the one true King. Feel the weight slip. Embrace the forever-peace Jesus brings.

*Sidenote: I wrote this entire piece waiting out a massive thunderstorm in north Texas, with gigantic tornado warnings & matching siren wails. No, it is not as it should be. Though the irony is not missed on me; I will not be going outside tonight.*

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