Saturday, March 30, 2013

the year with no chocolate bunnies.

it's been a tender week for me. actually a tender Easter season.

this weekend is the pinnacle of my faith. if Jesus hadn't died- I wouldn't have the grace and forgiveness and eternal life that his death so graciously gave us. and if He hadn't rose again- it would appear that Satan won.

but He didn't. Jesus won.

our. Jesus. won.

sometimes I still can't get over that.

He won for us. because He loved us so much. He was willing to hurt....hurt a lot. to bleed. to have people yell horrible things at Him. to have people mock Him. to have his clothes stripped away and to have thorns thrashed into His head.

because He loved us.

and my thoughts this year go to my friends.

my friends who live in East Africa.
my friends that believe that Jesus lived but do not believe that He died.
my friends that do not believe in the resurrection...because well, why believe that when He didn't die on the cross in the first place.
my friends who believe He was a great man and that He will come to reign on the earth.

but my friends are lost.
and without the things that happened on Easter we all would be.

and I also think about all the dark things that this year has brought for mankind.

human trafficking. churches being burned down. pastors kidnapped. miss**naries killed. cancer. death. post election arguments. discontentment. sickness. fevers. drought. famine. hunger. orphans. widows. suicides. abortion. families divided.

and my own discontentment, pride, selfishness, and sometimes harsh words said before thinking.

we are a dark people. and that's why Good Friday had to be dark. so that the light could come.

the dark things show that we CANNOT do it alone. it strips away any self-dependance we could ever have. it takes away that idea that "we got this." because we don't. we don't have this.

my emotions have been bubbling over as I realize that Easter isn't some chocolate bunny, sweet holiday.
no. Easter is a scandalous, earth shattering, bold season. and I have felt my need for Jesus this year during this time more than ever. 

every tradition of this holiday has brought a subtle weight this year.
seeing eggs. seeing bunnies. candy. peeps. grass. baskets.
it has all brought a weight.

these burning images of my friends across the world. burning images of people worshiping a god who doesn't exist. burning images of the babies in the orphanage who if WE do not go...will never know the love of a Savior. {this one aches the most}

and once again HE reminds me of the question the Holy Spirit sparked so many times in DJ.

"Am I worth it?"

He is worth it all. worth no water. worth sitting on dirt floors. worth sweating for days on end. worth crying at the sheer loneliness. worth stones. worth threats. worth life itself.


His resurrection gave victory over death. gave hope.
.....turned mourning into dancing.
.....gave boldness instead of shame.
.....gave courage instead of fear.
.....certainty over the doubt. gave us solid ground. 

so this year instead of eating peeps. and eggs. and focusing on the Bunny.

may we honor Him with our lives. not only on the Sunday that changed the world but that through us....He can reclaim His fame in all of the world. amen.

I urge you to pray for those worshiping tomorrow in closed places. and for His light to shine among the unreached.
it is one of the hardest days.
{I can remember awaking before the sun so that it was safe in the middle of the desert. and it was worth it.}

may He be glorified.

with your blood you purchased for God
    persons from every tribe and language and people and nation. Revelation 5:9.