At the moment, not a lot is happening in our lives. Anette finished her second year with distinction. Our oldest is writing her final exam in a school. Next year, we will start to home school her. It’s funny how life turns out. We firmly believed that our children will go to school till the end of grade 12. Our country however, changed its schooling structure to an outcomes based system in 1996 and in our opinion the standard is not high enough. I work at a university and see firsthand how the students struggle with their studies. I want something better for my children.
It’s almost amusing, the amount of talking, praying, worrying, looking at options, talking to friends, discussing, discussing, discussing our options. When you leave the system, it’s always a bit frightening. What will happen if we mess this up? This is our eldest future we are talking about. Do we have enough discipline in our home? I’m talking about the parents 🙂 But, despite all our reservations, we are going to do it. Please pray for us.
What I love about this is that Jesus does not give us an easy way out. There are no short cuts. And I’ve finally been able to phrase what’s been in my heart for the last year.
Jesus will take you into life, not out of it.
Jesus is not some escape out of reality. Yes, we want Him to be, but He is the opposite. Marx said that religion is the opium of the masses and he was probably right. Religion could be that. Jesus, however, is not. Jesus was born in a time of conflict and oppression, not a time of peace. He lived a life where, when people hit you, you bleed. He cried real tears. He got tired. He knew how it felt when friends disappoint you. He saw through the pretense of the religious types. He did not go to a hilltop monastery to contemplate life. He lived as a carpenter’s son in a world filled with chaos. He became part of the pain, the confusion and the misunderstanding and He had to deal with it.
A lot of the time we will say that Jesus gives us inner peace, but I believe He is also present in our inner turmoil. We have these busy lives and then sometimes escape with Jesus to a retreat to settle the inner commotion. But we do not always have the luxury to do that. When we are in the trenches of everyday life, we cannot decide to come and go as we please. But you know what; Jesus is there in the trenches with us. We are not alone.
We always need Jesus, but we desperately need Him INSIDE the noise.
This is why I believe that followers of Jesus are the heroic ones. When there is a fire, we rush toward it. When there is pain, we are not afraid of it. Where there is a crisis, we can face it head on, because we were made for moments like these. When our own lives fall to pieces, we begin baby steps towards hope. Our laughter is authentic, because we have no need to pretend. We cry real tears, because we love the person in front of us. We cry real tears, because life is not fair. We are not afraid of weakness. We are not afraid of life or to live, because Jesus is in it.
Perhaps I’m naïve. Then I am joyfully naïve. We belong to the kingdom of God and the rules are way different in His kingdom. He came that we can really live. Jesus said that He is the Life. And the only way to live out His Life is to be present in the wonderful mess, called life.