Can these bones live?

Daily Reading for March 14

“Mortal, can these bones live?” (Ezekiel 37:3)

Some setbacks in life are so profound that they feel like death. I called him as soon as I heard. He was in disgrace, incredibly so: stripped of his position, perhaps even of his orders. Everyone was talking about it. The misdeed that brought about his humiliation was a grave one, too grave to overlook. He was finished.

The day of our date arrived, and there was an unsurprising message on my answering machine. He wouldn’t be able to make it today. I called him back. Let’s wait a while, he said. Okay. I knew we would never have lunch. And we never did.

His life and career were dry bones. A gifted ministry dead, dry as dust. I hope there was some other friend, one whose overtures he could accept. But I think there may not have been. I think he may have chosen to be alone. I think the isolation of death may have been what he craved. Life was such a mess. Don’t bother me. I’m dead now.

But he is the same gifted man he was before his sin was revealed. Every good thing he ever did is still good, no matter what bad things he may also have done. This is true of every one of us. None of us can be understood solely in terms of the worst things we’ve ever done. Death may end our lives, but it doesn’t cancel them.

And he yet may rise again. He isn’t really dead yet. In the rubble of his repentance may lie his resurrection, waiting to reveal itself.

From Let Us Bless the Lord, Year One: Meditations on the Daily Office, Easter through Pentecost by Barbara Cawthorne Crafton. Copyright © 2005. Used by permission of Morehouse Publishing, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Past Posts