Saturday, April 4, 2015
This weekend signifies the most important events in Christianity.... the resurrection of Jesus.
In my earlier years, especially as a parent, I bought into the commercialism of the holiday. Easter Bunny, egg hunts, baskets, pretty dresses. Bunnies, baby chicks. I'm not saying that's wrong. I still think those things are fun. I'm sad that my kids are 'too old' for the fun of the holiday.
It's been in the past few years, that I've really thought about what Easter signifies. When I think about that I am knocked down a few pegs. Off my high horse.
There certainly is reason to celebrate, but not for the reasons society thinks.
Easter weekend signifies the death and RESURRECTION of the Son of God. Sent to this earth to endure horrific suffering he didn't deserve all because God loves us.
We are sad because Jesus had to face death on the cross. I cry if I stub my toe too hard. I can't imagine having large nails driven into my hands & feet while I am coherent. Think about the beating he received PRIOR to his crucifixion. He didn't have an epidural. No Narco, Lortab. Nothing.... just straight on pain.
He hung on that cross, being shamed for the world to see. He was being made an example. And for what? For me. For you. For people who never think twice about the suffering he went through. He went into the pits of Hell. The world wept for his death.... his followers wept for his death. We should weep for his death.
Yet 3 days later - and I'm not going to debate whether it was a Sunday or a Monday or maybe even a Wednesday. But 3 days later, the tomb was empty. There was no body. The cloths that he was covered in were in that dark tomb, but Jesus was no where to be found.
That moment in time..... what a moment! If they didn't think he was the Messiah before that; now they knew!!!
Christians around the world celebrate the resurrection of our Savior that day 2000 years ago. That moment in time gives us hope that we will forever be with God in Heaven. That God really does love us. His Son was blameless, but willingly succumbed to God's will to prove that love.
I am humbled because there isn't a moment in my life where I even remotely deserve that gift. None of us do. That's the beauty of grace & forgiveness. We don't deserve it, but he still offers it to us.
We just need to take that gift.....
Posted by ~*~ Allison ~*~ at 1:23 PM
Thursday, April 2, 2015
Recently, I was involved in a women's study at church. I signed up and was randomly put at a table to with 9 other women; 8 of whom were strangers.
We studied the book of James for 5 weeks. Really dug deep into the meat of the scripture.
As you know, I don't do well with new situations. I hate having to put myself out there. Sure once I get acclimated I'm fine. But its getting to that point that scares me. I mean, what if people don't like me? What if I say the wrong thing? What if I live in the 'wrong' part of the county? What if I don't drive the right car?
What if? What if? What if?
Let me tell you - those "what if"s can drive a person crazy!!!!
Clearly we all signed up for this group because we were interested in learning more about our Savior. There you go - a common interest.
As the weeks went by, not only did we learn more about James, his message and his brother, Jesus, but we slowly dropped our masks. I wasn't the only one. All of us came in feeling like we needed to be this 'perfect' woman who had it all together. So strong in our faith. Biblical scholar.
By week 4, we dropped the masks, started to really reveal who we are. Scared, hurting women so desperately in need of our Savior's love. We each have a story. Not the identical story, but a powerful story nonetheless. It was in 1 women's vulnerability that we were all able to find comfort and peace. Not because she had it worse that us, but because she put a voice to the feelings.
Last night was our last meeting..... it was bittersweet. I really enjoyed diving into the book of James. Great stuff in there... So poignant for my life RIGHT NOW (don't you love how God does that?). I got exactly what I wanted out of the study - a better understanding of God. What I didn't expect in 5 short weeks was a bond with these ladies. A bond so important that we want to continue together.
People always say "Oh, God brought us together" and I do believe that, but this group is truly the definition of that. One lady was assigned to a different table and accidentally sat with us. We kept her the entire time because she was where she was supposed to be.
Getting back to the masks..... we all hide behind them. Some more than others. I find that it is SO much easier for me to be transparent here on my blog. You can't see me. You may not even know me personally. This is safe. Yet to be transparent in real life, the 1st time you meet someone. Frightening!!! However, this experience has challenged me to not hide behind a mask at first meeting. It's scary to put myself out there. Yet I'm hoping it'll be freeing too.
Here's to removing the mask and being myself.
Posted by ~*~ Allison ~*~ at 3:35 PM