That Holy Ache

Spring 2017

I awake with that Holy Ache.

If there is any time I feel this acutely it’s on Monday mornings, where I try to move between a resurrection Sunday and the real-world Monday. Where I move from the weekend rest and peace, to the week day chaos and problems.

We who are human know this Holy Ache. It is something that transcends cultures and generations, something that will be part of us until our life on this earth is complete.

It’s the one that reminds us that we are in between. We are in the not yet; the messy middle. That place where we know what we see is only a fraction of the real story, yet we ache for that real story to be revealed, to come to fruition. We are ‘between the lost and the desired’.

A Holy Ache.

That ache we feel when we read or hear the news and our hearts stop with the horror of it all, the longing to make all right, to gather up all the orphans, the widows, the sinners and show them the love of God. The holy ache that acknowledges we are capable of so little in comparison to the great need. That ache we feel when we are at a funeral of one we love, knowing we will never see their faces, hear their words, hug their bodies again. That ache we feel when the rich thrive and mock while the poor struggle to survive. That ache we feel of injustice and wrong and all those things that remind us we are in the between.

It used to be that the holy ache would direct me to despair. It’s all too much, I thought. It’s too hard. Seeing through a glass darkly is not enough. But lately I have embraced the holy ache as an integral part of my faith journey – a critical part that brings me to a greater love and desire for God.

Yesterday our priest said it well. We are caught, he said, between irrational joy and sorrow.

I have embraced the holy ache as an integral part of my faith journey

Irrational joy and indefinable sorrow.  Waking to the smell of spring, knowing we are alive, seeing new buds coming out on trees and bushes fills us with joy, even as we face the sorrow of a world that is not as it should be.

So welcome to today’s Holy Ache – may we walk in faith that aches will be redeemed and in the middle of Holy Aches we may know Holy Joy. 

14 thoughts on “That Holy Ache

  1. I want to be there. I want to be still when I am in between and not fight to resolve the issue. I want to let the ache be and see God instead of just the pain.


  2. Yes. This is so true. Though,when I am in my right mind I remember every day is full of resurrection. It’s what makes the daily ache holy.


    1. I think it is that Holy Ache…but then again you could try mint tea and see if it helps :). If so then it’s a stomach ache– if not then yeah– it’s a Holy Ache.


  3. Today the Holy Ache suffuses my every cell . . . as I wait for our infant granddaughter’s open heart surgery later this week, as I watch my beloved brother-in-law living through the final stages of a ravaging cancer and his wife, my sister, struggling to say good-by to the life partner she loves so dearly. My prayer today is that I may breathe in the Holy so it may soften the pain of the Ache. Thank you, dear Marilyn, for words that with their deep understanding, bring comfort.


  4. Reblogged this on Flung Forth Anew and commented:
    I hear you. As a mom, I hear you; as a missionary, I hear you; as a wandering human trying to see mercy in a world with an often hardened heart (and as one whose heart could use some tenderizing, I guess!) I hear you. Thank you for putting this into words.


    1. Thank you for reblogging! And thank you even more so for hearing me and for getting it. As I said to one friend– it was a day when I knew without doubt that this world is not my home!


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