Friday, March 29, 2013

My Failure of Words on Easter

Wow. Two months. It's been two months since I last blogged. So much for good intentions.

Today is Good Friday. I must confess, I didn't give it too much thought. It was a Friday; that means co-op, tidying up, cooking dinner and having people over. It wasn't until my friends went home and all the toys were put away and the house was quiet that I reflected.

On Facebook many of my friends posted pictures of crosses and Bible verses and various religious symbols. I don't have a problem at all with that. I really don't. But when I try to do that, try to express in plain words what Easter is about or how it makes me feel, I shy away.

Some things are just too big, too deep, too... something to put into words. I am reminded of Mary's response to becoming the mother of Jesus, "But Mary treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart." I think about incarnation, righteousness, perfection, torture, pain, loneliness and death and think, how can I possibly express that? How can I possibly verbalize how I feel about that?

To try and express myself right now would sound trite, overstated and cliched. "Jesus is Lord." - sounds like a bumper sticker. "He is risen!" - church sign. Maybe I am just too cynical. Maybe I over-think things. Why can I not join in with the pictures and the simple words that really are true?

My feelings are just too deep. Like the first time my husband saw me without clothes on. Like the first moment I held my first child in my arms. These are things I have never even wanted to describe to another person. These single events that affected me so profoundly that I am forever changed. I will never think, feel or be the same person again.

My sin makes me sob in the night. My heart breaks with it. I strangle with it and it claws at me, seeking to rip me apart. I fight it and feel that I will never be free of it. This sin that attempts to dominate my existance is... gone... Forgiven. Erased and thrown into the depths of the sea. Cast as far away as the east is from the west. Remembered no more... paid for. Atoned.

I am afraid of being flippant with the blood of my Savior. I am afraid of saying the words without counting the cost, without meaning them. I was raised in the church, my first Sunday was when I was 3 days old. I can name the books of the Bible, heck, I can read the Bible without thinking about it. I can pray in a group while planning my weekly menu. I can tell you where Elijah ran off to after defeating the prophets of Baal (Mount Horeb). I can tell you how David escaped capture from his enemies (drooled on himself and pretended to be crazy). I can tell you about double imputation and propitiation. I can teach you how to repent.

But telling you how I feel about Christ's death on the cross is too intimate. Too personal. Too tragic and wonderful and undeserved and all the adjectives that only the angels know how to pronounce. Maybe when I get to heaven, my new tongue and new body can articulate and sing my feelings. I can join the angels and sing, "Holy holy holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come."

All I know is that God is real and He is good. 'His love is endures forever.' He is the Lord. 'The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin.'

'Christ is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.'


Scriptures referenced in this post are:

Luke 2:19
Micah 7:19
Psalms 103:12
Isaiah 43:25
Revelations 4:8
Exodus 34:6-7
Hebrews 1:3

The phrase "His love endures forever" is repeated in Scripture at least 43 times by my count.