Archive for December, 2022

A Vesuvian Christmas

A Vesuvian Christmas

I’ll never forget going to Pompei, Italy. I saw figures of people who had perished in the volcanic eruption. They were covered in lava and ash. Centuries later excavators found hollow places in the ruins. They poured in plaster of Paris, waited, then chipped away the lava rock. They found perfectly cast images of the people in their death poses.

I’ve felt hollow before. There have been people in my life over time and something happened in our relationship. They disappeared in the lava of resentment, the ash of forgetfulness, or simply by the passage of time. Years later I am saddened by so many losses.

But, the Holy Spirit comes along and pours the plaster of grace and purpose into those hollows of my life. I lift out the image of those people and put them in the museum of remembrance. I’m thankful I had them in my life, and I’ll never forget the shape of their unique self, the contours of their personality, and the smoothness of their comforting touch.

So, I’m not hollow. Because God fills all things: all the spaces, all the gaps, all the longings.

So, this Christmas, when I miss people, and YOU miss people, remember: God has a large supply of plaster of Paris.

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