i go through bouts of listening to country music every now and then. i especially like to listen to it when i am taking a long drive on the texas country roads – i guess it makes me feel like i’m really from here or something. anyway, this morning i heard a brand new song by george straight called “here for a good time”. the chorus starts off like this:

“i am not here for a long time

i am here for a good time

so bring me some sunshine, the red wine, pour me some moon shine”

other than being a catchy song, i gotta tell ya – these lyrics really resonated with me today. go with me on this one and allow me to invite you into my imagination (what i like to call my “brain lounge”). take off your shoes, make yourself at home and now look at this:

this woman is me – or at least this is the woman i daydream of being. on any given day i stand in the middle of my house –  after i’ve wiped off the fourth round of throw up from my shirt, washed off the accidental streak of little girl poo from my hands, recovered from the simultaneous toddler meltdown/infant screaming match – and i think of her.

this woman sits elegantly gazing; marveled by the beauty of the ocean at sunset. she’s just walked down from her suite at the five-star resort where she’s treated to a morning and evening massage – while sipping a freshly squeezed orange juice poured over crushed ice. she had trouble picking from amongst the many beautiful dresses in her spacious walk-in closet, but opted for this black one as it would be appropriate for her short, evening stroll along the beach. the pearls in her hand were a gift sent to her from her husband and daughters who stayed behind in their 5 bedroom lakehouse to organize her kitchen cabinets – oh how she misses them! her own personal hairstylist chose a “classy yet carefree” look for dinner tonight at the local seafood restaurant where she’ll walk in and be embarrassed by how everyone eating stares in awe of her stunning beauty. she’ll then sit down and feast on delectable shrimp lightly covered in white wine butter sauce and elegantly sip a glass of cabernet. she’ll tell the locals witty and fascinating stories of her life. every once in a while she’ll throw her head back and laugh with freedom and peace abounding in her heart.

by the way – she’s also young, her skin glows, her eyes are bright, she’s perfectly tanned and she’s back down to her college weight.

see, sometimes in my head i try to convince myself that since “i am not here for a long time, i am here for a good time.” but, no matter how hard i try t o push it out, the reality of life shoves it’s way back in – i suddenly remember that we have to go to hospital for the next round of blood tests or i have to call my husband and apologize for yelling at him earlier that morning or i simply sit down and think about my friends who have lost children and parents or are battling all kinds of diseases this year. reality is hard to miss.

and in the depths of my heart i think of Him:

the One who was not here for a good time. He was here for a short time – a carpenter made to carry a horrid cross on His back while being betrayed, spit on and beaten beyond recognition. He got on His knees and prayed and washed the dirty smelly feet of sinful men. He carried no possessions with Him. He was the epitome of humility. He had zero pride and bursted at the seams with only compassion, gentleness and love. He walked long, long roads in order to reach the suffering. The only place He finally rested was on the cross where He, because of the excruciating pain, struggled to take His last breath. i think of Him and i can hear Him asking me to long for Him – to be like Him – to live life as He did.

if you are now expecting some sort of epiphany and radical change from me where i tell you that i no longer desire to be “that” woman – then i’m sorry to disappoint you. i struggle almost every day longing to be her. my mind can’t comprehend how Jesus chose every minute to live like He did – it is the antithesis of my human nature. i can only ask Him each day to please *please* help me long for and desire a life like His and i pray He will replace my desires and longings with His own.

isaiah 53 says this about Jesus:   

There was nothing beautiful or majestic about his appearance,
         nothing to attract us to him.
3 He was despised and rejected—
      a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief.
   We turned our backs on him and looked the other way.
      He was despised, and we did not care.

4 Yet it was our weaknesses he carried;
      it was our sorrows that weighed him down.
   And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God,
      a punishment for his own sins!
5 But he was pierced for our rebellion,
      crushed for our sins.
   He was beaten so we could be whole.
      He was whipped so we could be healed.
6 All of us, like sheep, have strayed away.
      We have left God’s paths to follow our own.
   Yet the Lord laid on him
      the sins of us all