JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools

pictures and stories from the water’s edge

JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools header image 2

Bruised but not broken

April 11th, 2004 · 2 Comments

A bruised reed He will not break
And a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish;
He will faithfully bring forth justice. Isaiah 42 NASB

I’m not into Easter this year. I’m not into most *religious* holidays. I don’t like how the commercialism and candy overtake whatever deeper significance a day might mean. Christmas though seems a bit easier to me than Easter. Perhaps it is the dark cold days that make me want to decorate and cook a feast for our family. Springtime I’d rather be packing a pb&j picnic to a park (especially on our 80 degree day!) than baking a huge ham and potatoes. In our culture too it is common to celebrate a baby’s birth, making a cake for Baby Jesus, but it seems strange to celebrate someone being ripped and resurrected. Or the fact that giving gifts can be taken from the story of Jesus’ birth while chocolate bunnies and hidden eggs don’t appear in the gospel tales. Maybe it’s that the world seems to stop, at least where we live, with companies giving holidays, lots of time off at the end of December, while Easter is a bit of an orphan, overlooked, a hiccup of a holiday, hoping for a notice. What seems silly to me is that for those who believe in Jesus, Christmas and Easter are every day. Why make lots of effort for special celebration two days a year over truths that should be in our lives the other 363, holiday or no?

Maybe I’m tired. That could be true too, after Ted being away two of the past three weeks. I didn’t have any energy to make a cute little craft with the kids or as a gift for them. This morning I just wasn’t in the mood for today to be Easter. I got frustrated at the pile of sweet potatoes I was trying to prepare. Then I felt guilty about all that.

This year too we are at a difficult place in our spiritual journey as a family. I feel beaten. I feel bruised. I’m not sure how to go forward from here. Often I’ve thought of the words that Isaiah used to describe Jesus, at the top of this post in NASB and from the NLT below:

He will not crush those who are weak or quench the smallest hope. He will bring full justice to all who have been wronged.

I feel like that bruised reed. I feel like that dimly burning wick about to burn out. I don’t want to be here but that’s where I am. The smallest hope – that’s what I need. That’s all I have left. Jesus won’t break me or extinguish me, weak as I am. I am grateful. I am seeing him new and loving him for his gentleness and compassion.

Being in this state, I’ve thought about other bruised reeds around me. How do I encourage my children? Do I break them? Do I crush them? Am I extinguishing them or helping them into full flame? What of others around me? If I open my eyes I can see many bruised reeds and barely burning wicks in my life. How can I fan their faith into flame? How can I give hope?

Yet I feel so weak. Jesus prayed for Peter “that your faith may not fail” (Luke 22:31). Now I find I am praying that same prayer for myself.

Easter morning tells me that my prayers will be answered.

Slowly, with each sunrise, I feel I am being resurrected.

Tags: journal

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 medmusings // Apr 11, 2004 at 11:21 pm

    julie’s down on easter

    julie reveals heartbreak on easter:This year too we are at a difficult place in our spiritual journey as a family. I feel beaten. I feel bruised. I’m not sure how to go forward from here. Often I’ve thought of the words that Isaiah used to describe Jes…

  • 2 taniai // Apr 14, 2004 at 2:51 am

    hey jules,
    haven’t been reading your blog from singapore. but my heart is with you with this easter entry ( which enoch pointed out )
    when i look back on my easters, eggs and church dramatizations aside. i hold close to my heart the year 1996 when i finally found a job after 9 months of unemployement in modesto. one year, enoch and i were struggling so much, i felt like i needed God to resurrect our marriage, and the most recent year, when we closed the deal on our home just on easter morning after months of traumatic house hunting.
    something’s got to die in order for it to rise again. i wouldn’t be so ashamed of a bruised reed.
    when we are weak then are we strong.
    it’s His stubborn love that will never let go of us.
    take care.