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Published: Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014 10:01 a.m. CDT

“Grandma’s dead, honey.” 

With those words, I expected to see sadness, and probably tears. What I never expected was the bright smile that appeared on the little girl’s face. “Oh no, Dad, she’s alive!” 

What a strange response.

“No, sweetie, you don’t understand. Grandma just died. She’s dead. Now we know she’s been sick for a long time, right?” 

Curls bounced as the girl nodded, still smiling. I could tell Dad was getting a bit embarrassed at this odd response. People in the hospital waiting area were beginning to look at them in odd ways. 

Dad continued, hoping Maisy would understand soon. “So, Maisy, now we’re going to plan grandma’s funeral, her special going away worship time.”

“But DAD!” 

About to scold her, that smile stopped him. Why was she still smiling? “What, honey?”

“Dad, don’t you read the Bible? I do, and so I know that grandma’s not dead – she’s alive like crazy! If God is, then grandma is too! She’s got God’s LIVE POWER! Can we have a party for her after her special church time? ‘Cause Daddy, grandma knows Jesus, and this is her first birthday that she gets to hug Him – isn’t that great, Daddy? Grandma’s in God’s LIVE POWER!”

Now how do you answer that? It was the most amazing thing. People started clapping in that waiting room. First one. Then a couple. Soon, applause fairly rang through the room and out into the hall. People looked in to see what the excitement was, and little Maisy told them.

She said, “My grandma’s gone home to God. She’s having a Live Power party – right now, and Jesus is right there with her! Isn’t that just the best thing you ever heard?”

It’s amazing how God brings such powerful life from what we see as death, isn’t it? Problem is, it’s not always that easy to see the life, because we’re busy looking at the death. But it’s there, just like little Maisy in that waiting room with her dad.

All of us experience “little deaths” in our lives. Isn’t it good that we worship a living God, a God who brings new life?

Listen to Jesus: “And regarding your speculation on whether the dead are raised or not, don’t you read your Bibles? The grammar is clear: God says, ‘I am – not was – the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob.’  The living God defines himself not as the God of the dead, but of the living.” Hearing this exchange the crowd was much impressed. (Matthew 22: 23-33, Message Version)

I met Maisy and her dad in a hospital waiting room. Her grandma had been through three wars and three husbands (all killed in combat). Dad really was thinking about which one would meet her in heaven. Who could he tell Maisy was “dancing with grandma in heaven?” It turns out, it didn’t matter to Maisy. Jesus was what mattered to her. A party with the living God was what mattered to her. The rest was just, well, details.  Maisy just rejoiced in God’s “LIVE POWER.”

What if we, like Maisy, could focus on the power of the Living God we worship? Oh sure, we have to notice and deal with living in this world – all the “details” of daily living. But could it be that we get so hung up in the details that they consume our focus, that they become the reason we live each day? 

Could it be that, like the Pharisees Jesus speaks to, and like Maisy’s dad, we allow the “deaths,” both literal and figurative, to consume us?  God is. Not was. Through everything, good and bad, happy and sad.

Through little disappointments, through the many losses involved in just living our lives, and most of all through what we call “death,” God steadily and persistently offers “LIVE POWER,” resurrection power!

So each time you experience disappointment, each time you go through those “little deaths” involved in life here on earth, remember that God is always present to bring you new life. Always.

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