I went to bed last night realizing that I had not written anything in awhile regardless of my wonderful intentions and I am grateful that I don't depend on the written word for my dinner or I would starve to death. As I was lying in bed my mind was bouncing around like a ping-pong ball: peeps( yellow vs. pink), my diet, winning the lottery and what I would do, my hips hurting, should I cut my hair short, wanting to be on a before and after TV spot where someone offers to give me plastic surgery.. and would I do it, paying my bills, thinking about the grand kids, and what could I do to make more money. No kidding, all those thoughts were going through my busy brain and the final thought about more money segued into different professions that I could do to increase my financial well being and then to those professions that I was glad I hadn't done. That segued into me thinking about Easter and feeling like I was glad that I wasn't a preacher and having to come up with a different inspirational, soul saving sermon every week. I fell asleep with the sentence " he died for me" as my last thought. I would love to tell you that I had a fabulous Easter dream of redemption.. but I didn't. I did dream I was on a boat and it had been hijacked by terrorists. My entire family and grandchildren were there along with a bunch of friends and loads of people that I didn't know. We were all standing on the top deck and they were going to kill one of us. They were going to take one of my kids and I stepped up and said no take me instead. My family was crying and I remember looking at them thinking that this was okay. My life for theirs, I was good with that. In the dream the man was curious about my willing to die for my family so he went through the passenger list. I really didn't want to die and when he got to people that I had never met I was really thinking that I didn't know who that person was so maybe it would be okay for them to be pushed overboard instead of me. I was saved from making a decision because a Seal Team came in led by Sean Connery and they killed the terrorists. I am not kidding, that was my dream.
I can see myself standing in front of a gunman to protect my family and not thinking about it. The need to protect "mine" is strong in me. But to offer my life up for a perfect stranger is not something that I would push through a crowd to do. I believe in that circumstance I would be making myself as small as I could, keeping my eyes closed and repeating the mantra " NOT ME, NOT ME".
Jesus died, with some reluctance, for our redemption. He didn't want to die. Luke 22: 42 -44 "Father if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will , but yours be done." An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. Mark 14:36 "Abba, Father," he said, "everything is possible for you, Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will." He died for all those people who cheered for his death because in doing so he saved them all. The wonder of it all was that he didn't die for just those people on Calvary but for all of us. People he didn't know, people who were not even born yet. He died for me. I am insignificant, a sinner, and not worthy of the gift of His life but he did it anyway so that I would have a chance to enter the kingdom with him at the end of my time. This was a good man, one who did nothing to earn his death but he followed the will of his Father, paid the ultimate price and was resurrected to prove that there is life after death. The blood that he shed and the life that he, albeit reluctantly, gave is our promise that life does not end but goes on in glory. He died and rose again for me and for you. Blessed Easter, HALLELUJAH Jesus is risen.
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
He believed in puppets, Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy and in me. This birthday marks the time that you are a father of two little ones who I hope have your sense of wonder and imagination. If they didn't get that gene from you my dearest son I hope that you will introduce them to the magical world that is just a blink away and teach them to embrace the happiness that imagination can create. I have always been and will always be so very proud of you. I love you more than the stars in the sky.