Friday, November 11, 2011

And Now I Cling To What I Knew. I Saw Exactly What Was True

The title of this post was taken from the song After the Storm by Mumford and Sons.

This post was not written by me. A friend, John Mullineaux, wrote this and it held such meaning for me that I had to share. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Yeah…? Well…It Didn’t Happen That Way So Just Get Over It

Some of you know that John is my favorite gospel in the scriptures (I might be biased on that opinion though). I’ve posted scripture from this gospel before…even some recently. I usually leave the word as it is for the reader to get what was meant for them in the scripture I feel moved to post but this is one whole section that I really feel should come with an explanation of what it means to me. I’m not going to go over all of it, just the parts most important to me.

John 3:16

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

This scripture is kind of the alpha and omega for me. I memorized this scripture when I was 2 or 3 and it was the only one I knew for the longest time. I didn’t understand it at the time and it didn’t really mean anything to me. However, through all of my childhood and into my adulthood, I recalled these words from time to time and wondered if it was really that simple.


And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me.

I tried to learn this as my second scripture. I wasn’t really touched by it particularly until I read 1-12 all together. I put this here because; if you’ll notice that the first was 3:16, that will give you a little insight into my personality. I never did learn this one.

3:17 – 18

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

            I learned this shortly after deciding that only knowing one scripture was not enough for me. I still don’t know it by heart but I now think there is not really a way to mention 3:16 with out 3:17-18. This just paints the picture more completely for me.

8:5-7 & 10-11

Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her…
…When Jesus had lifted up himself, and he saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord.  And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.

            I often heard people talk about 8:7 when I was growing up. I heard it in and out of different churches but I never knew the story until I read it for myself. I knew the basic lesson here is not to judge people but I never really understood what it meant not to judge someone. It means we can’t judge them for anything. Not things that they do that we wouldn’t; not things that we are told not to do as children that “should be” “basic manners for anyone;” and not things the scriptures teach us are to be avoided…nothing.
            When I read this, I picture myself standing in front of the judgment seat having rampantly judged people in my life knowing and not caring and the Lord says to me something like, “You’ve judged many unfairly in your life. Now you must be judged as you judged them.” This is not good for me. The swearing alone would fill the Library of Congress complete with sections for regular swearing, made up swear words, sentences that were comprised only of swear words, and a small annex of words that, while technically aren’t swear words, wear used in a swearing context. When I think of it this way, most of the time I can change judgment into realizing that I don’t know why people do what they do and it isn’t my place to decide right and wrong.


Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit and was troubled, And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord, come and see. Jesus wept.

            I think anyone who knows the story behind this one would agree that there is no greater display of compassion known to man. This is an excerpt from the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead. Yes he’s the Lord and yes he could raise anyone from the dead. So why did he cry? He knew he was about to bring Lazarus back and yet he wept with the family and friends of Lazarus.
This is where I learned that it’s okay to have your own feelings. That may not make sense to a lot of people out there but that’s what it means to me. Jesus didn’t tell anyone it would be okay; he didn’t tell them that it would get better with time; he didn’t say, “Hey! There’s no reason to cry.” He just cried with them.
Like most of the things I’ve learned from the gospel, I really needed this. I solicited all the stories and gathered all the council I could from people who had been through what I was going through and I was just about tired of the same old platitudes. I was grateful for all the help and comfort I received but I was just plain tired.
I was tired of feeling like I was facing everything alone. Tired of people looking at me with the “poor guy” look. Tired of hurting. Tired of crying. Tired of replaying those stories in my head and realizing I’m way behind every timeline I’ve gotten. Tired of people telling me, “Man! You got the raw end of that deal! You’re better off. Why are you still sad about that?” I just wanted my life back the way it was before all this. I wanted so badly to wake up and realize it was the worst dream I had ever had. Then I just got mad.
And then I was mad about everything. Mad at what happened. Mad at being alone. Mad that my heart, soul, and whole life was ripped away in one day. Mad that all my plans meant nothing. Mad that no one I talked to could muster anything more than, “You get through it.” Most of all, I was mad that I was still sad. I was so mad that I wasn’t “completely better” yet that whenever I started to get sad I would tell myself some version of, “Yeah? You had a plan for your life and this didn’t fit in? Well…it didn’t happen that way so just get over it.”
Upon reading this scripture, I realized that my grief is my own. I don’t need to be 100% by any given time or date no matter what’s down the road or around the corner; no matter what anyone else knows. Everyone deals with things differently. So, I wept, Jesus wept, and I felt better.

John 3:16

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

This scripture is kind of the alpha and omega for me…
Now that I understand how it is this simple and how it isn’t simple at all, I love this one even more.


Beverly said...

THANK YOU for these words tonight , Melanie !!!!

Unknown said...

This is a beautiful post. Thank you for your insight into these scriptures and for the message you shared. Take care.

Shaila said...

Absolutely beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

loved the feelings you expressed and what those scriptures meant to you and how you relate to them in a very personal way. If Christ wept then he certainly understands our weeping and like you said he does it with us. That was beautiful.

mom said...

anonymous is your mother

Melanie said...

I'm so glad you guys liked this post. My friend John wrote this so he gets all the credit. I just loved it enough to share it :)

Anonymous said...

HI Melanie, These words are beautiful and true. You have the right to grieve any way that you want to. No two people grieve the same. Sharon has been dead for ten years and I grieve anede cry for her daily; I don't care what anyone else says or thinks about how I grieve. I love you! Donna Terry