Apr 17 • 39M

I Didn’t Wanna Write Another Easter Message 🙃

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I Didn’t Wanna Write An Easter Message 🙃

Honestly. For so many reasons. Where do I start? I’m not even going to get into my week. So many things have been wrong about it. But I’ve been able to stay pretty positive about it all, I think.

This week is a special week in my heart. So maybe that’s helped a bit.

I didn’t wanna write an Easter post … but not because of my week or anything personally going on, though. I didn’t wanna write one because this week is sooooo busy for Christians. Lol. Easter is referred to as the “Super Bowl of Christianity”. You know that?

And it IS. Literally it’s the reason for the entire belief system. It’s a SUPER big deal. And I believe it 100%.

I just didn’t wanna add to the noise. My spirit isn’t really a loud spirit. I see a lot of hoopla and production and “loudness” and I kinda run for cover. And if you are reading this, you know that I definitely have a loud “Jesus Drum” but if there are so many drums beating this week, I kinda craved more quiet.

My friend texted me on Thursday and she said “Is it weird that I’m kinda sad because Jesus is going to die soon?” (Meaning Friday and it was Thursday). I just got emotional while writing this because THAT is exactly IT. THAT… that’s what this week is all about. Trying to understand this week as if you were there to witness it. That’s God-level empathy. To know the road that Jesus had to walk as a sacrifice for humanity.

If you don’t believe what I believe, that’s a lot of words and ideas to take in. So, to explain a bit, without getting too religiousy. (Side note: you ain’t gotta believe nothin I believe and you are still gonna be invited to this community… I promise. Just please understand that these are not opinions of mine about what took place. This is what I know.)

I believe that God in Heaven, that created mankind and all things, sent His Son to earth to live a human life. His name was Jesus of Nazareth. Everyone knows the part of the story where the Virgin Mary gets pregnant and has a son. Did you know that He didn’t do any ministry at all until he was 30? So, for 30 years, He walked around on earth, just like you and me. Farts, coughs, laughs, giggles, muscle cramps, excitement, joy, pain, life… death. He experienced life through our eyes.

Imagine making a mug in pottery class and then becoming the mug so that you could experience the life of that mug. You’d know how hot the coffee was… how bad the morning breath was… how it felt to be cracked or discarded. It’s a silly illustration… but… that’s what I believe God did.

Prior to Jesus (God’s son aka God on earth) walking and talking around earth, only a handful of people “could” talk directly to God. I put the quotes around “could” because it had become religious custom that only the priests and holy men were allowed to talk to God. They had a special place, too. They could only communicate with God in certain temples or places that where designated as a place that God was.

You might have prayed before. That’s YOU talking to God or a “higher being” or energy or whatever you believe…. But that wasn’t even an option before Jesus came to earth. No, I’m serious. Prayer wasn’t a concept that was so freely engaged in. God was far away… in a Holy place. And only met with certain people at certain times. If you wanted God’s blessing, you made a sacrifice to Him. If you were a farmer, you’d take from your livestock, a portion of what God had blessed you with, and you’d sacrifice it. You’d give it back to God via burnt offering many times.

You have heard the phrase “God knows”. Well… I believe He really does. Lol. And I believe that God knows the only way to talk to us is in a way that we understand. Since sacrifice was the only way to get to God during this day and age, Sacrifice was the only way for Him to let us know how much He loved us. So He sent His Son. Knowing that we (humans) wouldn’t be able to wrap our minds around the fact that God was walking around on earth and that we’d eventually kill Him.

We killed Him. Not because He committed a crime or did anything wrong… we killed Him because He confused us and He scared us and He challenged us to think and believe something completely impossible. That God would come to earth with a posture of love and compassion and empathy. We couldn’t believe that the Almighty would ride into town on the back of a donkey, we expected Him to ride into town with an entourage and an army and riches and glory.

But this man is a servant. This man actually knelt on the ground and He washed His followers’ feet. I’m talkin about the dusty ass crusty ass feet of men and women who’d been walk-in around outside all week on unpaved roads. Servant Leadership.

That CAN’T be the Almighty God of wrath that we’ve known from the Scriptures. He rained down fire and brimstone. He sounded more like a God to fear than a God that would… die? for me?

I want you to imagine 2 perspectives that I’ve thought a lot about.

The Power and the Pain

The Power

I think what I’ve always loved to think about is how different the story could have been. Jesus, in his time in ministry did incredible miracles. We are not talking fairytale level things. The amount of legitimate and secular documentation of Jesus’ existence, miracles and life are pretty insurmountable. I mean… He had enough power to intimidate the rulers of the day.

He could have snapped a finger and gotten off that cross. He could have blinked hard and stopped the beating. He could have clicked his heals and been back in heaven … but His purpose hadn’t been completed.

He submitted His power to His purpose.

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The Pain

Imagine traveling with Jesus for 3 years while He did miracles and healed people and raised the dead. They KNEW He was the King of Kings but in this moment… He was nailed to a cross, beaten beyond recognition, and now… dead. Imagine the pain they felt. The confusion. The “but but but…how?” Ugh. The heartbreak the must have felt.

What we didn’t realize was in those 3 days, Jesus was defeating death so that we could have life. Our entire reconnection to a distant God was forged in that grave.

His pain was the delivery mechanism for His purpose.

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Easter is actually my favorite holiday (can you tell?) I’m choked up right now, (actually I’m crying. To be honest. The thought of that scripture ⬆️ hits me in the heart every single time. ) so I might as well go full tilt with it. Ha!

I was 13. I’ll never forget this. I was sitting at church… Easter Sunday. A Predominately African American church in the south. There was a reenactment of Jesus going to the cross. People whipped Him and beat Him as He carried this giant cross to the place where He’d eventually die. I had heard the rest of the story. I knew that He would come back. I mean…. Easter. Duh.

My mom always made sure that we knew that Easter wasn’t about Easter bunnies and candy, it was about the triumphant return of God from the grave. The sacrifice.

I understood that part to the best of my 13 year old ability … but in the moments where I saw this actor portray what God did … for me. And who God was… for me. I started crying. I remember just… weeping. My mom thought something was wrong and she asked me if I was ok and I just said “He did this…for me?!” I knew that this was God. So, He could have changed this whole narrative, much less… getting beat… suffering… getting whipped… humiliated… So you mean to tell me that He suffered to the point of crying tears that were blood… for me??

It wrecked me.

He died … for me? He sent His Son… for me?

This didn’t feel like the God I had heard about… this felt like a personal God. A human God. A human connection to God. An empathetic God.

I feel like we mess it up. Religion. All the noise. All the production. All the bullshit. I love church. Don’t get me wrong. It just feels so loud right now. I know from working in a church that it’s such a stressful time and I love the hearts of the people that are bringing it all together and making space for people that may not ever go to church except for Easter. But, I just feel called to something different.

That’s why I almost didn’t write today. I didn’t want to add to that noise. But you know what? I’m not really writing for people that have it  figured out. That’s not my purpose. I think I’m supposed to spend more time holding the truth with an open hand. It’s mine to share… not mine to convince people of.

I pull back from the noise and the hoopla because that’s where I am today. Personally. I need the space as He takes me away to a quiet place and He protects me. He spends time with me. He’s empathetic and loving and full of care. He’s thinking about me…

Just like the way my friend was thinking about Him. That’s why I called her question to me “God-like”. Because THAT is what the whole story is about, above everything else. A level of empathy and compassion that’s so deep that she actually got sad that Jesus was gonna die the next day. And she knows what the other side of the story is too!! But that posture… that empathy… the connection … is what Easter is all about to me.

The only reason we celebrate His triumphant return from the grave is because He first sacrificed. And He didn’t have to. He could have made the human coffee mug and set us all on the shelf. And closed the door. But He didn’t. He gave us a connection back to Him. A direct line. He gave us a choice. He doesn’t make us worship Him. He’s not fire and brimstone and yet He IS conviction but also empathy.

The whole world changed. God became human and sacrificed himself so that we could have a relationship with HIM instead of having to have a relationship with Religion. You don’t have to go to a guy who knows THE GUY at the time or at the place… we gotta direct line. Some people look up, some people close their eyes, some people close their hands, some open em, some people pray when they’re driving or before they lose it on their kids…. All of that. All of it. Was made possible by this reconnection to God that we celebrate called Easter.

In the Christian faith we say “He is Risen” and it’s like a call and response thing… everyone knows to respond “He is Risen indeed”. I’ve always wanted to say “Damn right He is” because I don’t personally say the word ‘indeed’ that often but somethin in my gut says Damn Right He loves each and everyone of us broken ass humans SO MUCH that He made away back to Him. I’m not even going to get INTO the Holy Spirit that Jesus sent as His earthly replacement to His physical body… half of y’all already think I’m nuts. But let’s just say this… You are not alone. Ever. Not in your bruises and not in your blessings… you are not alone. God is only a mumble or a groan away. Peace is within arms reach.

I don’t really do this often but my spirit is saying “invite” … if you want to start that connection that I keep talking about. The one that guarantees me that I’m not alone. The other day I was telling my friend Zoie… “yo. This season has been so crazy I don’t know how people do it without Jesus. It cements my mission and my purpose to teach people about Him.” If you wanna get to know Him… I’m not promising an instant miracle or offering a step by step manual… all I’m offering is an invitation. If you want to know this Jesus, this God, this Holy Spirit… this servant to mankind. This lover of all. Just say these words out loud or in your heart. And even if you believe these words already… let’s say them with our brothers and sister that are making this invitation.

God, thank you for making me part of Your purpose. Thank You for everything You do for me. I believe You lived here on earth like me, that You suffered and died for me and you rose again to save me. I surrender to whatever You wanna do with me. I give my life to You. Use me to do Your work here on earth so that more people have a chance to know You.

That’s it. All you have to do is choose that you want to know Him better and deeper and closer… and He’ll do the rest! I’ll help… I mean… however I can! I’d love to hear if you are making that choice and I’ll walk with you down the road, however I have the honor to. But… this is Easter. To me. Right now. Close. Personal. Intimate.

Guys. Don’t get me wrong. It’s SUCH a celebration. It’s such a blessing. It’s SUCH a big deal. Trust me. I get it!! We’re celebrating SO much on this day and it can be transformative on your whole life. I just wanted to honest that if you are feeling like maybe it all gets a bit much around Easter… I kinda do too. Especially when I’m going through a rough spot. So it ain’t got it all figured out… or you think you have a lot to learn… or you are interested in being what God wants you to be but you don’t know exactly how… I’m glad I’m not alone. And I’m glad for what feels like a divine inspiration to write.

Thank you for making it this far. Thank you for saying that prayer whether it was for you or someone else. We stand WITH people because we know that God is doing a good work in each of us. We just gotta let Him.


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