You know that moment right after you blurt something out that you think is funny when it dawns on you that it isn’t, or that the person you’re saying it to doesn’t know you well enough to know that you’re being funny? When the words kind of hang there in the air and you wish you could grab them back before they land. Words you sent out to gently ping that pierce instead, the sting in their fluffy tails.
I had that moment today, and just as quickly it was gone. The words fell, pierced, the reaction came – confusion, hurt – and profuse apologies followed. I tried to explain what I did mean but it sounded clumsy. I made a joke born out of a closeness that we didn’t yet have and that we probably won’t know for some time. I misread. I ill spoke. They forgave me, but I can’t shake the sad. I feel about 2 inches tall.
In chapel this morning we sang an adaptation of a song that I used to sing as a kid. Back then it was “Lo he comes with clouds descending” – now there’s an extra ok on the lo and the tune is less hymnal. It’s not better or worse, just different, that’s what I was thinking about for a lot of the song. But the final verse shook me out of my musings, just as it did the first time I heard it. There is a refrain in the last verse, repeated twice and then twice more as a coda. “Come and claim us, come and claim us”.
All of the song is quite beautiful, picturing Jesus return to the world that rejected him. Every eye sees him, knows him as King and trembles before him, while his ‘ransomed worshippers’ see the scars from his death and wonder that it was for them. Then finally he is enthroned and the kingdom is come and so we cry out for that day to be. And it made me tear up to think of it, this motley college crew hoping for that day this morning. And it makes me thankful now, that this hope of an eternal inheritance, of judgement and justice, of mercy and grace is what sustains a believer in this broken world.
This great hope for Jesus to return carries with it so much incredible promise. It warmed my thankful soul this morning to sing it and it soothes my ashamed soul this afternoon and makes my heart sing.
“Come and claim us, come and claim us. Hallelujah! Come, Lord come.”
In other news it’s Friday! As I finish off this post I’m sitting on a plane about to leave for (hopefully) sunny QLD. I love everything about flying: the bags, the carousels, the boarding passes and the window seats (woo!). I love popping over to the airport to catch a flight, because I never do it. I love watching other passengers and wondering about them and trawling through the airport shops and allowing myself to get caught up in the wonder of going somewhere else, even if we’ll barely ascend before it’s time to land.
I don’t often feel the ache in my soul to get away and I’m so thankful. I’m thankful to be living a life that I don’t want to escape from, because it hasn’t always been this way. These last 7 years, Newcastle and now Newtown have seen almost every single thing change for the better. Except for God. He is still good. He is ever so good to me. Happy weekend! xx