He could have walked away! That thought kept running through my mind. I was in high school and was at the movie theatre with some friends watching “The Passion of the Christ”. It was a time in my life when I was going through a season of being angry at God. Life wasn’t going as I wanted it to and God felt very distant. As I saw the different scenes in the movie of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus being betrayed by Judas, Jesus being whipped and ultimately being nailed to the cross; I was reminded that this was the same Jesus who had the power to control the wind and the waves. He could call down more than 12 legions of angels anytime He wanted. (Matthew 26:53) As John 10:18 tells us, no one forced Jesus on to the cross, He freely chose to lay down His life. The simple yet profound truth that if Jesus loved me enough to die on the cross for my sin, I could trust Him with my life renewed and changed my heart that night.
The “Passion of the Christ” clearly depicts the pain Jesus went through on the cross to save us. It was horrendous, words can barely describe it. Therefore, I am ashamed to admit the number of times I have just skimmed through the narratives in the Bible describing everything that led up to and happened at the cross. The story has become so familiar that I am afraid it has lost its significance on me. Can anyone else relate?
Jesus talked about the importance of having a child-like faith and the more I watch my two young nephews, I am becoming convinced that their wonder in life is the wonder we should have for Jesus. It doesn’t matter what it is, if it is something new and/or exciting, they are instantly captivated
Have you ever heard someone talk about the death and resurrection of Jesus with such passion and emotion that it deeply moved you? This week while attending classes, I was blessed to be able to again.
Here is some of what I wrote in my journal in response:
Lord please give me fresh eyes and a fresh heart to understand more of the magnitude of Your unending love and grace. Familiarity breeds boredom. God, I don’t ever want to bored of hearing about Your great love and the great sacrifice of Jesus. Help me to understand more deeply the depths of my need for You- how I was a slave to sin and had nothing to offer you but my filthy, disgusting rags of sin and pride. I was dead in my sin and I couldn’t see or hear You. But just as You took Jarius’ young daughter who had died and took her by the hand and raised her up to life, you did the same for me. You brought me out of the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of Your glorious light. Now I can see all the times I grieved you when I chose to go my own way but much more amazing, I can see how Your grace is so much stronger than all my sin and shame. You’ve given me everything I don’t deserve. Instead of experiencing your just wrath, I know what it feels like to be forgiven. Instead of experiencing separation from You, I can personally know and experience you. Lord I want to be amazed by you and in awe of you. I want my heart and mind to be so impacted by what You accomplished on the cross that it colors what I say, do and think each and every day. Help me never lose the wonder of Your amazing love.
This is my prayer for myself, and each one of us this Easter…
Happy Easter Friends!