If you’ve been following the tide of pop culture at all, you’ll be amazed at the amount of interest that story-line finales are currently generating. The wildly popular TV show, “Game of Thrones” is in its final season, so the aficionados are glued to their screens, taking bets like seasoned bookies. On a lesser epic scale, the closing moments of “The Big Bang theory” has the die-hard geeks in full-scale lament.
A finale is defined as the last or final part of something and is usually used in reference to the climactic termination of a particularly intense dramatic or musical performance. In life, as in theatre, we love a sharply pronounced closing punctuation rather than a slow, indecisive fade-out. We prefer our imaginary exits tied up in a neat bow, possibly because so much of life is left suspended indefinitely without satisfactory denouement.
As frightening as endings are, they provide a spiritual backstop. They set a boundary that helps us move on. The proverbial line in the sand cuts both ways, and can be strangely, if savagely, therapeutic. If you’ve ever counseled anyone involved in a toxic love-affair who simply cannot admit the facts, extricate themselves and walk away, you’ll know what I’m talking about. Nothing is worse for the psyche than a cycle of expectation, hope, disappointment and failure revolving ad nauseum. Chapters that finally and irrevocably sever can actually be our most powerful advocates.
Let’s bring this ‘finale’ idea down to a more personal level. Not to be morbid, but what if you were to get that dreaded Doctor call-back to a fatal diagnosis? After the initial shock, it would sharpen your focus beautifully. With time counting relentlessly down and suddenly unutterably precious, how would you shape your grand finale?
Of course, the most coveted finale of all is “Happily Ever After”. There’s something in us that simply refuses to abandon the expectation of a long, triumphant walk into the sunset, no matter how contrary reality is. The problem, I’ve learned, with growing older, is that you stop believing in happy endings. Too many profound disappointments traumatize us, leaving scarring on our very bones. To preserve internal calibration and to insulate against further destruction of hope, we mentally brace ourselves, promising “I’m not going to do that again!” It just costs too much to shipwreck one more time. We settle instead for a modicum of reasonable happiness, unaware that without passionate intent, life is simply killing us softly.
I’m often amazed at the darkening that has tried to settle over my mind and heart since I hit the milestone of fifty. This is a real, scare the crap out of you, thing. Some sombre genetic shadow of deep negativity looms incessantly to prey upon you, and must be passionately and faithfully driven off. I am forced to constantly rebuke the internal voices of gloom and doom that want to overrun my territory. Externally, other wolves creep in on sheep’s clothing, so be vigilant. Many of them love to masquerade under the mantle of ‘common sense’ but don’t be fooled: these charlatans do not line up with Scripture. It may look real, but it’s all lies, and terribly dangerous. Don’t underestimate the destruction some ignorant yahoo wreaks with their Linus cloud of psychic pessimism; awakening your inter Crone by telling you what you can’t do now that you’re older. Beware the toxically anxious; Typhoid Marys of worry, phobia, scorn and skepticism. If you want to live in the toilet bowl of darkened thinking the last years of your life, go ahead, but I won’t be swimming with you. There are more salubrious waters.
Isn’t it time we focused back in on who’s actually running things? There’s a reason Jesus calls Himself “Alpha and Omega”. He is the beginning and end of history, but it’s way more personal than that. He’s the beginning and end of our unique histories, each of us. In the final analysis, we’re going to be standing and looking into His face, so we might do well to actually believe Him when He tells us who we are. If we are living and abiding in Him, the worst has already happened, and been utterly voided.
Christ’s resurrection is your resurrection too. This is why we are to yearn for all that is above, for that’s where Christ sits enthroned at the place of all power, honor, and authority! Yes, feast on all the treasures of the heavenly realm and fill your thoughts with heavenly realities, and not with the distractions of the natural realm.
Your crucifixion with Christ has severed the tie to this life, and now your true life is hidden away in God in Christ. And as Christ himself is seen for who he really is, who you really are will also be revealed, for you are now one with him in his glory! Colossians 3:1-4 Passion Translation
It ain’t over ‘till Omega says it’s over. He’s in charge of the seasons you are experiencing right now. What good portion of the Kingdom is He trying to impart to you? The miraculous truth of the Gospel is this: you can choose your own happy ending. If you’re not enjoying the kind of results you would like, reconsider the ground of your laboring and the kind of seed you’ve been putting out. If “Death and Life is in the power of the tongue”, stopping speaking death over yourself! Try this dialog instead.
I declare, in Jesus name and by the power of His blood, that I will grow old in strength. I will be strong and healthy in body and sound in mind, until the day I breathe my last. I will not be afraid of the challenges that age brings with it, but embrace the changing tide with the Lord’s courage and might. I will walk victoriously in every precious day that has been given to me, to be with you in glory, Lord. Thank-you for my life.
cb Photo by Bing