The Parable Of The Big Blue Blanket
I need to tell you about two men. Two men and a blanket.
You might be familiar with one or both of these men.
They are both very determined, both are very persuasive, and both can be misunderstood. But that’s where the similarities stop.
The first man is usually in the way. He makes it impossible to have any fun. He’s not into fine details, into what makes things special, or whether he’s worn out his welcome. He’s the one guy who cheers as it rains on the local parade. What a pain!
The second man is nothing like the first. Never has a thought for himself, this one. He’s the life of the party. If he can make you smile, then he’s content. And so sensitive… rushing to everyone’s aid, the first one to make sure everyone is taken care of, and he never forgets a face or a name. Ever. I should also mention that he never holds a grudge, exudes kindness everywhere he goes, and is big into compassion and dignity extended to all. What a hero!
The first man really isn’t all that remarkable looking, except for the fact that he never goes out without a blanket. A big, heavy, blue blanket and it’s always soaking wet. Really huge. Really heavy. Really wet. Really blue.
Disconcerting to say the least.
The second man, he’s dressed simply, but his poise hints at something like royalty if you can imagine. In spite of the grace he carries in his walk, he’s not afraid to let his hair grow out like all the kids do these days. Completely approachable. Oh, and there’s one more thing that stands out… at any given point in time, as you pass him on the street, he’s always got a tree with him. Carries it with him everywhere.
I’m very much acquainted with these two men.
Big, heavy, wet, blue-blanket-guy follows me around. And for some reason, I can’t do anything about it when he decides it’s time to share that big blue blanket. He stands across the room, decides it’s time, and comes at me with it, casually, as if it’s the most normal thing in the world.
And I’m helpless to stop him. All I can do is watch him approach. He drapes me with it, the weight bearing down (think movers blankets on a truck, serious material) and I have to try to function with it on.
Most days I can, but sometimes just barely.
There I am, wandering the grocery store in the big blue blanket. So frustrating. There I am gardening in the big blue wet blanket. I become exhausted. There I am at the movies, covered, unable to experience anything, in the big blue blanket. There I am at family functions, hoping no one sees it, but it’s there, weighing me down low.
And then every so often I would start asking, “What’s the point? I can’t live in this stupid wet blanket.” So I withdraw, I wait it out in my bed, I become this close to giving up” And the first guy is the only one who can peel that darned big impossible blanket away. And only if he feels like it.
Well… him, and the second man.
The second man- is my savior.
He also can lift the blanket and dispel the gloom.
But he does so much more. He’s a life-preserver. He’ll let you cling to him for as long as you need to, till you get a glimpse of the shore line, and can get your footing… and when you can’t hold on any longer, he simply holds onto you, for life if need be. And reminds you that what you’re going through, is actually only temporary.
Because of that tree he carries across his shoulders, you have an amazing reward waiting for you. So he talks you through the pain, and the fog, and the defeat. And his words sound like this:
“No, I will *not abandon you or leave you as orphans in the storm- I will come to you!” (*emphasis mine) John 14:18
“I am leaving you with a gift-peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give is not fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27
“Blessed are those that mourn, for they SHALL be comforted.” Matthew 5:4
The man with the blanket is Chronic Depression. It takes a lot of work to avoid him. And yet he lingers. Some of you know him.
But the man with the tree is Jesus. He’s rock solid. He’s not afraid of the blankets of life, like depression, grief, anxiety, or sickness. He takes that blanket and turns it into something incredible, valuable, lesson-giving, and redeeming if you ask Him to.
[bctt tweet=”He turns it into something incredible, valuable, lesson-giving, and redeeming if you ask Him to.” username=”cduncansphoto”]
And He speaks into your heart, giving life in spite of whatever kind of blanket you’re trapped in, saying…
Christine, sweet story but what do you know?
I know He’s done exactly that for the last 28 years. I know that’s why I’m still here. I have tears in my eyes just repeating that out loud.
Hope is supplied.
Strength is supplied.
Peace is supplied.
Blessed are those who are poor in spirit…
VICTORY comes in all shapes and sizes my friend.
Even daily victories within the big blue blanket.
The Man with the Tree will tell you that.
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