Written on August 10, 2016.
My route from car to tent was no different than the norm, but my walk was. Covenant carrying clouds and beauty bringing breeze, my companions. My shirt hung enhanced with drops of truth that met me and melded as I lingered a little. Short sighs and deep breaths and thunder rolls said what words could not as I carried on. And my marvel magnified in a place which uses familiarity to usher me to serenity, yet dazzles me with different in its all things new, day to day.
Testimonies pierced and prodded me towards the doubled front door of our weathered and willing abode. A creak and crack allowed me in with the contents of the weighty wind of the wholehearted.
A handful stood where hundreds had been and I felt the empty and full of it. The ache and the awe. And I was absolutely apprehended but the astonishment of the after.
How do you live in the lift of a life forever changed? Do you still count each step and measure every breath? How long do you try to describe the happenings of a few days among a magnificent multitude before you simply become it? And when you do become, you realize there is no undoing the unity of community. No unsinging of the angels songs. For to “un” any of it would be to deny you were ever there. It would be the break of back instead of following forward. The side to side of the dance is what widens and wonders us.
It is the dwell of the after which turns and returns us to the ever before and always intended. “After”, ‘achar’, the hind or following part. The cavernous place within, that unhollows in order to follow. The place that won’t leave for later what is now for today. The again that adds to everything that has ever been subtracted from. For “after” brings the fulness of forever. It is what knocks and niggles in the beyond of days. All the sighs, hmmms and wows add up and so you brave barefoot, collect clouds and seal seeds of love eager to erupt. Birds and bees now beckon you. And so, you hug the helm and let your soul sing.
To carry on and not leave off, to stay found, you respond to one risk, reckoning that without it, there is no reward. You practice the pursuit of priests. Builders, cubit by cubit, yarn by yarn, hammer, fire and mold. Engaged, adorned, satisfied. Testified.
From these places, the ever after comes.
Nehemiah 5:15 speaks of an “after” of Nehemiah. He is invited to choose what is beyond what has always been. We each have experienced things we believe can never change, until they do. Journal about something that you thought would just always be in your life, until He came and dazzled you with different. If you missed waking up each day in the after of it – it’s Jubilee! It’s a great time to ask Him to return you to it and then live it, bit by bit, piece by piece.
Since this is week 47, we have a special gift for the first person that sends their AFTER journal entry to firstname.lastname@example.org