Day 39 ~ Our Story

good_friday_bigWhen our children were very young, on the night before their birthday we would tell them their “birth story.” We didn’t really set out to begin a new tradition, but things that keep happening year after tend to keep happening year after year! And I’m so glad because I have such precious memories of each of them laying in bed, listening to either their dad or I tell of how they came into the world and became our family. And even though they were born only 15 months apart, in the same hospital, and even in the same room in that hospital, their stories were very, very different. They were unique to them and always will be their very own birth story.

We attended two very different Good Friday gatherings this evening, but both were reminding us of the the same sacrifice and the suffering that Jesus allowed himself to experience on our behalf. And it hit me…..this is my birth story. Not the one that happened at the “Old Sacred Heart”, but the one that opened the way for freedom from sin and eternal life. My “salvation story” didn’t begin at Easter; it began long before, and good-friday_620x350_41492156242it’s most important chapter took place right here…..at the cross.

I was reminded tonight that we can rightly claim no part of the resurrection story if we aren’t willing to also embrace the cross and the salvation that was born of suffering and injustice. To be “fully Christian” means more than celebrating victory on Easter Sunday morning; it means also sitting with Jesus as he taught us how to suffer – faithfully and completely. But that’s not the fun part, right? It’s sooo much more satisfying to just jump to the victory, foe-vanquishing celebration!

I’ve learned a thing or two about suffering…..and I’m also learning so much about releasing that pain and allowing the peace of Jesus to create beauty in those desert places, so much more beautiful, not in spite of the suffering, but because of it. I think when we rush from Good Friday to Easter we do ourselves, and certainly our salvation story such a great disservice. The heavy lifting – the heart of the message happened in the darkness and if I want to fully celebrate Easter, I can’t turn my eyes away from Jesus when he is at his lowest….because he was only there for me, and for you. ♥

f0825edd90f6ee1781290665818bf8c2--kingdom-of-heaven-doodleAll around us people are hurting, and need to know they are seen and heard and loved….not when they “get it together”, but even in the darkness. And when we can share our unique authentic salvation story of once being lost and then being rescued by the grace of Jesus and the deep, deep love of God, well….that’s a “birth story” that needs to be told and retold and retold as many times as someone needs to hear it, even if just to remind ourselves whose family we belong to, now and for all eternity!

How He loves us, friends…..so much! You are worth such love….did you know that? You are worth every drop of blood that fell this day and every lash of a whip that Jesus took for us. He did it for love – and that’s a story worth retelling!

Much love and big hugs on this night where we choose to not turn away……

Shellie

How Deep the Father’s Love For Us

How deep the Father’s love for us
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the Chosen One
Bring many sons to glory

Behold the man upon a cross
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed, I hear my mocking voice
Call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection
Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom
Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom

Songwriters: Stuart Townend
How Deep The Father’s Love For Us lyrics © Capitol Christian Music Group

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment