March 31, 2013
As always, Sunday Edition is devoted to topics about God, Jesus and faith. If this isn’t for you can always skip a square cup’s Sunday Edition.
Six months ago, a mile south of our small town, my dad was killed at the intersection just south of the home he shared with his wife and family for over 60 years. What I feel had to be God-ordained was that almost all of my dad’s family members – a son, two daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, and other family members happened upon the familiar place just minutes after the crash. Rescue crew were there, the pickup was in the middle of the road and inside was the lifeless body of my father. As I walked to the vehicle emergency crew members and state patrolmen – who were local people and friends intercepted me before I could reach my dad. I simply asked if he was gone, and they said with sincere sympathy, yes.
That intersection in the road is an intersection we cross almost every day and for weeks we would pass over the black, tire marks that stained the road. One evening we were heading to a nearby town with friends to grab a bite to eat and again we passed the intersection when my friend Bob wondered about how I must think about this intersection in a new way.
I do. Every time those scars communicated a message to me. But how I think about this intersection is different than you might expect. That day, those stains on the road, and my intersection with a tragic, violent death are markers of a peace that could not be possible were it not for this day, Easter. The day that represents Jesus Christ’s victory over death. The power that raised Him from a violent, awful crucifixion is the power that I knew on that day.
A couple days later, all of us except for mom went to see dad’s vehicle. The adult kids stepped inside the shed that housed the mangled vehicle. One by one we began to usher in the grand kids if they wanted to see it as what I feel must have been part of our own grieving process. My youngest son, Tatum saw the vehicle and stated to cry, But in that moment I knelt down, looked into his eyes and told him that what even though that twisted metal seems scary and tells of a violent crash where death came, that wreckage holds no fear. That twisted metal, those scars on the road are powerless. Instead, they communicate a peace that each of our family knows with confidence that there is no sting in death.
And, it is because of this day – Easter morning and the promise it offers each of us.