Life has a way of throwing unexpected things in our path. These things – death, injury, loss of a job – have an immediate impact. But they also have the disconcerting effect of obscuring the future. Suddenly, the life we thought was sure – one day serenely and routinely following another – becomes dark and unclear. We’re not sure what to do next.
It’s now been five weeks since I was released from my job. And, like most people, wondered: now what? God recently provided some direction through two very different channels: the circus, and Gospel music.
If you’ve never heard of Cirque Du Soleil, you need to know they’ve completely redefined the concept of “circus.” They continually push the boundaries of creativity, providing experiences that are truly magical and visually stunning. I recently read a blog post about Cirque Du Soleil’s current Las Vegas production “KA.” Apparently the stage pivots and moves, and what caught my attention was this:
“The performers are almost always at risk of falling off of the platform. Sometimes they even have to fall off on purpose in a freefall and you don’t see them land. ‘They perform on the edge of the void’ as Robert LePage, KA Creator and Director says – and it is a l-o-n-g way down (up to 100 feet – yikes!) to the net below.
“In the KA Extreme video, I got to watch the performers go through the emotional process of learning how to overcome their fears and master both performing on the edge of a void AND making a complete freefall.
“LePage says ‘We ask our performers to find the courage to confront the void’.”
When life throws unexpected and often frightening things in our path, the ground opens up in front of us and we’re forced to confront the void. The void reminds us we’re not in control – that at any moment we can fall and not have any idea how far. As believers, it’s still an emotional process, but we overcome our fear with a tenacious and growing trust in God to provide whatever we’ll need next.
Which brings me to Gospel music. Earlier this year singer/songwriter Israel Houghton released a new album titled The Power of One. There’s an amazing song called Moving Forward that just grabbed me. No matter what’s happened in your life, Jesus “makes all things new.” It doesn’t matter if you’re divorced, or whether the job you lost was great or terrible, or even if you lost your temper with your kids… He makes all things new, but only as we continue to move forward.
And so, in the dark, unclear seasons of life – confront the void, and follow him… forward.