The Man Murdered is ALIVE!

Years and years ago when Passion of the Christ was released, I did not want to see it.  I am a christian.  I believe in Jesus Christ.  I believe he died upon the cross for my sins.  I believed it, but I did not want to see it.  I hide my eyes during violent scenes in movies.  I think about it for days.  I avoid the whole thing.  So, when I heard that the movie was intensely, above and beyond violent, I checked that off my “to do” list.

And then people kept talking about it, they wouldn’t shut up about it.  And I heard a man being interviewed on the radio.  He said that he did not like torturous, violent scenes.  Thank you.  My thoughts exactly.

He said that he had heard from friends how bloody the movie was and they could not get the scenes out of his head.  Thank you.  I don’t want to see it either.

And then the final blow.  He said that he realized that he needed that stuck in his head.  I tilt my head, confused.  Ummmm…say what?

He said that he needed to think every minute of every day of what Jesus did to save him from his sins.

And so, I saw the movie.

It was everything I expected.  It is not the kind of movie you watch while eating popcorn.  I wanted to hide my eyes for the, well, the whole entire movie, but the man’s words kept resonating in my ears.  I needed to see this.  I needed these pictures stuck in my head.

And so I watched.  With a sick stomach, I watched as Jesus was repeatedly whipped.  I watched with tears rolling down my cheeks as the nail pierced his body.  I watched as he hung in agony.

And I watched as he died.

And then I thought to myself, “OK.  I made it.  I got through the movie.”  And I wanted to get out of there.  But it kept going.

“He’s dead.  That was the most disturbing movie I’ve ever seen.  I get the point, he’s dead.  Let’s get out of here.”

And then the screen showed something that I was not expecting, it showed the empty tomb. The empty tomb!

HE IS ALIVE! I wanted to stand up and shout!  HE IS NOT DEAD!  HE IS ALIVE!  JESUS IS ALIVE!

All the hurt was washed away.  He was not bloody.  My stomach did not hurt anymore.  My sins are forgiven.  Jesus conquered death and he has the victory.  The movie is real.  It is a true story.  The debt is paid.  The slave is set free, the blind can see, the sick are healed, all the pains of childbirth are gone.  JESUS IS ALIVE!

I Am Growing Up

One of the best things about being a parent is learning alongside children. Starting back at the very basics and building from there. The continued education of James and Caroline began the day the test had two lines. 

With Madison in my tummy, her Daddy and I began to research and read like never before.  We were about to be responsible for a miracle called: life. One of my favorite pictures shows James sitting Indian style on our bed reading a children’s book. On first glance, it looks like he is reading to himself. You really have to search to find the brand new baby (maybe three days old) sleeping among the covers to know the book is not for his own enjoyment. 

One of my favorite traditions is, every year for Christmas, buying Madison a new Bible. We started with Children’s Bibles like The Big Picture Storybook, The Jesus Storybook Bible, I Can Read Bible, The Child’s Story Bible by Catherine Vos, and other jewels. With her Daddy reading every night, she has read through the Bible several times moving up to an NIRV Bible. Guess what that means?  It means James and I have been more consistent in our devotions than ever before. 

And when Madison wants to know why Evergreen Trees don’t turn brown, and every single thing about every single animal, and how to make origami, and where all the fifty states are located and who all the presidents were, and why doggies don’t get married. Guess what that means?  It means that Momma learns them also!

Recently, my little Renaissance girl wanted to learn to sew. So, (haha. Homophone)…so, her Daddy and I purchased a sewing machine for her birthday. You should have seen James and I trying to figure it out. But we did!  And Madison and I spent one of our Spring Break days purchasing fabric and making a travel laundry bag, couch pillows, and her new very favorite stuffed bunny. I can sew!  And that is one of the very small ways that having a daughter has made me a better person. 

Being a mother, gazing into the eyes of a precious little girl with a curious mind, has taught me something I should have known before I was a mother. Knowledge may be power, but LEARNING IS JOY. 

He is Going With Me

I have a week off second grade!  SPRING BREAK!  Okay, it is my daughter who actually attends school, but HEY I get a break also. I can hit snooze a few more times, a week off making school lunches, no setting out uniforms, a break from carline, and I get to keep my girl with me from 8:00 – 2:30.  

Plans, parties, and promises are scheduled but there is something that has crept into our lives and it always has a way of peeking its head out when we would rather have another day to go on a picnic and we would rather spend our money on some more spring landscaping, but he nags and pries and won’t go away. 

Yep, headed to Duke. I really love my doctors but sometimes I kinda wish I never met them. I have two appointments.  One with an oncologist and one with an endocrinologist. And I also have a scan. Don’t forget the scan. Errr. I wish I could forget the scan. 

But I hope and I pray, we are in and we are out and this is the only post on the topic. I hope and I pray that I get a clean bill of health and there are no more appointments scheduled and no more concerns raised. But, however it goes, the God who made my body and knows me more inside and out, and loves me more than I love myself (and that is saying a lot) has gone before me and nothing will catch Him by surprise, so my mind is at peace. And He is going with me. 

Hosanna! ¬†An Emotional Entry

I know it is Easter time, but I am painting a picture of CHRISTMAS.  The season took it’s time, but the night air was whispering winter time. It was time to build a fire and cuddle indoors. The weekend after Thanksgiving holds the tradition of the Hendrys picking out a Christmas tree and decorating. The day was perfect. Picture perfect memories. The tree was chosen, the lights glowed, and we sat and gave a sigh of adoration of the tree and the promise of Christmas before us. Madison’s eyes had sparkled with joy and excitement the entire day and now was the great cresendo. And then she did something her Daddy and I did not expect.

Madison plopped down on the couch, crossed her arms, puckered out her bottom lip and complained, “Humph!  It is all going to go away!”

Her Daddy looked at me with terrified, shocked eyes, “What is the matter?”

I, surprisingly, smiled with understanding and replied, “She’s a girl.”

Madison understood, maybe for the first time, that nothing of this earth is forever.  Madison was conflicted with emotions of wonder and excitement, and celebration, and a realization of something sad. 

Although girls can sometimes be labeled as emotional roller coasters, emotions are to be shared by both genders. The human race is fickle, easily given to extremes in emotion. 

A few thousand years ago, a man walked into Jerusalem. The word had spread about his arrival. Some of them had recently seen him raise a man from the dead and they thought, “This is our King! He has come to be our ruler!”  

As was fitting, they rolled out the red carpet, spreading their coats and palm branches for the triumphant entry. They yelled out, “Hosanna!  Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”

They praised and worshiped Jesus!  As should be done!  As he is deserved!  

But just a few days later, they let their emotions get the best of them. They were the same crowd yelling out, “Crucify him!”

Why?  They saw he was not going to lead an army. He was not going to be their earthly king.  They got mad. Jesus was not who they thought he was. 

HE WAS MORE!  He was not going to be a great King to rule Jesusalem, grow old and die. He came to set them, and us, free forever!  He had come to crush Satan and deliver us from the grips of Hell!  He was MORE than they could have possibly imagined!  

As mirrored by my daughter, sometimes my emotions get the better of me. But next time I am pouting about some earthly condition, I want to think on a grander scale. Today, while I worship Jesus on Palm Sunday, I want to look ahead to the purpose Jesus came to accomplish. 

Jesus is King not just of earth, but also of Heaven!  He is not only King now, but he is King of eternity.  

And, like the emotional crowd, sometimes when things take a bitter turn and it looks like defeat (the cross had to apper to be a crushing defeat!) I want to get ready and learn from experience that SOMETHING EVEN BETTER THAN I THOUGHT IS ABOUT TO HAPPEN!