On Monday night I watched the season finale to â€œGreyâ€™s Anatomyâ€. Iâ€™ve NEVER watched the show before, but for some reason I watched this particular episode. At one point in the show, a heart surgeon is performing a heart-transplant on a patient. The heart has been successfully sewn into the patientâ€™s chest and the patient seems to be doing well. Now the heart has to be massaged or shocked into action. She massages the heart. They shock the heart. Nothing. Massage some more. Nothing. Shock some more. Nothing. The attending surgeons and doctors and nurses all give up. They start folding things up. The heart-surgeon says, â€œWait!â€ Give it time. Wait! The monitor continues flat-lining. Itâ€™s just impossible that this heart is going to work again. Impossible! Too much time has lapsed. I even say in my mind, â€œHeâ€™s dead!â€ Then, just when it is certain that the heart has failed and the patient is dead, the heart throbs and begins beating! Success. The wisdom and experience of the heart-surgeon produced a faith that truly believed this heart would live again.
I immediately applied it to the personal lives of people in our congregation, and even to the life of our church. There are many people who have consigned us to death; many who have given up and folded up, certain that there is no life left in us. Weâ€™ve been both massaged with love and tenderness, and shocked with tragedy and forceful words, but nothing has seemed to work. Nothing. It was a good try and we gave it everything we had, but all for nothing.
However, I feel like that skillful heart-surgeon: I am waiting! Just wait! True resurrection only comes after true death. True death! It canâ€™t be feigned or approximate. It must be true death. Jesus was dead and buried. It wasnâ€™t feigned or approximate. It was total. Everyone had given up and thrown in the towel. The Spirit says, â€œWait! Wait! Wait!â€ I wait. I have an inexplicable certainty that this church WILL beat with life again! I canâ€™t give you facts or data or even experience to support my suspicion. But I believe in the resurrection. I believe in it, and so I have to trust God for it.
So I wait. My God, I prayerfully wait.