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Posts Tagged ‘Easter’

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Easter is an emotional process. It should be.

Every holiday carries the weight of emotion actually. Holiday’s are filled with the tension of joy and sorrow.

Easter for me is an emotional process. Easter is a yearly reality check. The cross always beckons me to listen and examine my heart.

Easter is the process of three days of brokenness, waiting, and redemption – pain, silence, and forgiveness. Jesus experienced life’s greatest version of brokenness and pain on that  Friday. He took on our sins. He felt the darkness of rejection and silence for the first time from his father. He was physically broken – spit on, cursed at, and killed in humiliation.

The disciples lost a leader, a dream, and their best friend. That sat stunned, locked up in a room not knowing what to do next; what life now meant. The sounds of thick silence and waiting were all that could be heard. Internal struggles and questions were written on downcast faces.

The process of life is just this. Transformation takes the process of brokenness, wrestling in darkness, and then the redemption of healing. Life begins at the end of this three day illustration.

Every Easter I am heavy hearted as I remember the brokenness I have experienced in my life, as well as my current struggles of darkness. It is hard. The process of change is just dang hard and humiliating. It is also in those dark places that I really feel the weight of grace and forgiveness.

Jonah spent days in the darkness of a whale. He wrestled in great tension. It was in that dark waiting place where grace and forgiveness came into focus for him.

But on the third daylight floods the world again. A tomb is emptied and death is conquered. Brokenness and pain have not won. Redemption and forgiveness is alive. Hope and dreams are reborn and life begins again.

Easter is where grace and forgiveness come into focus. I am so grateful that the story always ends in joy and hope.

HAPPY EASTER!!

Where are you in your life’s “Easter” process?

Are you experiencing brokenness, struggling in the waiting, or has the light risen in your dark night?

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For the past couple of weeks, I feel like I have been running into the theme of forgiveness. It seems like one of those times where every other conversation/sermon seems to have that one verse or idea you’ve been wondering about. That’s me. My usual response to those moments, you know once I finally get the memo to pay attention, is “dang it!” In the past week or so I have noticed a different response in me about forgiveness. Forgiveness has silenced my heart, and I lower my head.

We have entered that time after Easter where everyone has two choices. The first is that of choosing to walk in response to what Easter is all about, and that is forgiveness.

Most hearts are stirred around the holiday’s for good reason. The grief of death and the celebration of solidified hope came to pass. Christ rose and conquered death for me. This is no small thing. I want to continue to work out what was stirred up in me.

The second is the choice to “go back” to how life was before the message of the cross. One can look at Easter as a great holiday and fun times with the fam. Sometimes experiencing Christ can be boxed into that camp high experience. A camp experience is that high you can feel while being away from home, bonding with new friends, outside of your comfort zone, and connecting in a way you’ve never known before. Once you hit home that high fizzles and back to “real life”‘ you go.

Forgiveness is hard for me. I hate hurting people. I hate being on that side of pain. I really hate being on the side of the one needing forgiveness. It is the worst feeling in the world for me, (well beside puking).

I know I can dismiss forgiveness for me so easily. In taking over condemnation for myself, I dismiss the excruciating pain of the cross for me. I do not want to dismiss Christ.

Too often I say to God, “Don’t worry I will punish myself.” I get stuck in the weight of condemnation. It is so hard for me to hear, “Tracee, you are forgiven.” This is both from people and from God.

In remaining in the shackles of unforgiveness, I miss freedom. I miss the message of my savior. I miss the heart of another for me. I miss grace. I miss love. I even miss humility for me.

Part of my Good Friday pondering is to not miss love this year. I want to stare at the cross and really get that love poured down in the form of mangled forgiveness for me. I desire for that to be the heart I love and forgive through in return. I think this might be my writing theme this week.

Lord, help me not miss your forgiveness and love for me.

How do you struggle with forgiveness?

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The holiday’s always seem to stir up some emotions. With Christmas comes the sense of joy, family, nostalgia, ache for relationship and love, and a sense of togetherness. Sometimes the holiday’s can stir up old wounds, past hurts, grief, loss, and lonliness. Holiday’s bring up awareness.

Easter is different. As it stirs up emotions the purpose is different. Emotions are stirring up in me because Easter is a time of remembering that life was given for me. Easter is a time of remembering death and celebrating life.

Paul writes about this idea to some people in Galatians. Paul states that, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

I canNOT get past this verse. There is so much packed into these words. Paul recognizes that he has been redeemed from himself. Paul experienced a lot in regards to crucifying himself.

This week I am very aware of crucifixion needed in me. Experiencing death is hard. Laying down my old self does not come with out discomfort and grief. In my brokenness, I so desire for Christ to make life out of me.

The story of Jesus feeding the five thousand is always a reminder that in the breaking is where offered life comes from. God did that for me on the cross. Christ broke so that life could be had in him.

The second part of that verse talks about living by faith. That is hard for me in the midst of seeing past my brokenness to life. That is exactly where faith is needed. In this time of laying down my life that I need to believe that he loves me, tells me the truth, cherishes me, has my best interest in mind, restores and redeems me, and saves me even from myself. Acting in faith makes for the turning point in offering our brokenness.

All this is done out of love. “God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” I desire to give that same offering of love back and give him me.

My hope is that he will make life out me.

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As spring starts and all the things become new around me, I can’t help but crave that for my own heart. I think that there is a reason that God made seasons. For one it’s just a visual of hope that he makes all things new. I am in need of an all things new heart.

We are in Holy Week. The time of remember what Christ did for me on the cross. For some reason I can’t wait for this Easter. My heart feels like it is going through its own Holy Week. I have been taking a journey through the caverns of my heart for the past couple of months. It has been a hard season in the desert to feel the weight of my brokenness. There are a lot of wholes to work through.

God will forever be making all things in new in me. Today I am so grateful for that consistency in his character. I need the new. I crave the new. I am ready for him to “work on me.

Friday is always the day of rememberence of the sacrifice and the physical death part of Christ laying down his life so that I may know life and life eternal. As this day approaches I have a list in my head of characteristics, patterns of life, cycles of thought, and self-perception that need death in me. That is scary. There is mourning already for those things in me. They have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. It is time for death.

My soul is on its knees pleading for the old to pass away and the new to rise. There is hope for me yet. I am ready for the season of life.

Anything being made new in you?

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