The Secret Strength of This Big Bang Theory

We all come from somewhere.
As I visit families in crisis,
I enter neighborhoods lined with estates,
homes with second-floor decks, ocean views, and
hybrid luxury vehicles.
I also visit streets with names infamous to all caseworkers and
local police, streets that house transient populations who can move
in the middle of the night
and aren’t attached to possessions or credit ratings.
People come from both those places.
I come from a small town, a village in a rural town in a small state.
People in neighboring towns don’t see it for the gem that it is.
They don’t have high expectations for people who come from there;
but the residents have made it a cultural value
not to care what others think
and they don’t argue when underestimated.
It works in our favor more often then not.
Funny how I’ve learned to appreciate that each place of origin has strengths and weaknesses.
People from the ritzy neighborhoods have nice homes, cars that start all the time, and space to hide their trash
but often the hiding doesn’t end there because keeping up appearances is as mandatory as lawn care and neighbors are not so much support systems as they are lifestyle props.
And while people in the rougher neighborhoods wait in a lot of lines and their kids have learned not to ask why the cable is out,
there’s often help and a shoulder to cry on in the house next door and neighbors aren’t so quick to judge.
So, does it matter where you came from?
It does.
Knowing where we come from is a secret source of limitless strength.
Not our street address,
or our birth family,
our nation of origin or
our circumstances
No,
strength lies in tracing our genesis back to the time
when we were an idea
in the mind of God,
to the moment of our individual big bang.
That’s right.
That is our place of origin.
At some moment, outside of time,
the Almighty Creator
of the solar system, the human brain, and the seven seas
had a thought
and it was you.
You originated in His mind
like the plot of classic novel,
the vision for an artistic masterpiece,
the scope and movement of a world-class symphony,
or the blueprint of a cathedral.
When He called you into being,
He had a plan for completing
whatever He had begun.
Appropriating that knowledge
can make you strong
when people are looking at you funny
or crush your soul beneath the toe of their boot
or place a fist in your solar plexus.
Jesus fixed this thought in His mind
before the hour of His betrayal
and it fueled His actions.
“During supper, when the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him.” John 13:2-5
Do you remember that you came from God?
Do you have the assurance that you are going back to God?
This is the formula for strength, for service, for endurance that stretches the length of the road you
must travel to reach your destination:
Our Father’s great heart.
I don’t come from a preferred neighborhood,
a low-rent district,
or a podunk town in the boondocks.
You don’t come from a family of note,
A broken home,
Or the wrong side of the tracks.
No way, baby.
We come from God.
And if we’re following Jesus,
We are going to God.
This is our truth,
our peace,
our strength.
Where are you from, loved ones? There’s strength in fixing your mind on the truth.


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2 Comments

    The Conversation

  1. Judith Robl says:

    Great post, Lori! You echo William Wordsworth’s understanding of it.

    “Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting;
    The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,
    Hath had elsewhere its setting And cometh from afar;
    Not in entire forgetfulness,
    And not in utter nakedness,
    But trailing clouds of glory do we come
    From God, who is our home:
    Heaven lies about us in our infancy!”

    – See more at: http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15926#sthash.xOPCfcHg.dpuf

    Jesus stood at the tomb and called “Lazarus, come forth.”
    Remember?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Teaching young children in a low-income housing complex, I was lead to teach them to memorize “I am not a mistake. God made me on purpose, and He loves me.” That’s because so many of these children were told they were mistakes, unwanted, fatherless, unloved. I wanted them to know we all have a Father and He has a plan for us. (Jeremiah). I hope they still remember what they learned in our outreach ministry. MOMMA