Happy [post] Easter!
He is Risen indeed! There is much to celebrate and much to reflect.
If I’m going to be honest, this Easter was the most “Easter” I have ever felt before. Much like what I sad last week, the “Saturday” feeling of social isolation was very real and the unknown has been a familiar feeling with the quarantine at the moment. But there were many other things that I listened to that really spoke to me and my heart that I figured I would share.
On Friday I went for a run (I’ll talk more about my sudden interest in physical activity at a later time) and I put my music on shuffle. About a mile into my run a song called Mercy by Andrew Osenga started playing and the first verse was enough to get me to slow down and stop.
I like to tell myself that I’m an alright guy I don’t drink or smoke too much these days Most of my sins are secret so I only hurt myself The mantra of a man who slips away And if you love me, well, I am sorry Cause there’s no way I haven’t let you down I’ll wear my eyes low, in plain sight hiding We can both agree to keep our sides of town You wrap your arms around me You are gentle with my name You show me mercy and mercy leads me home again
I just find these lyrics so incredibly powerful. There is a sense of true anguish and reality to these words because I’m sure I’ve had these exact thoughts if not something wildly similar to them. With the first phrase being a denial of anything wrong with myself- which 100% speaks into my own pride. Just give it a listen here:
I’m telling you. When those first words sank in I slowed down to a walk in my run and just stopped. I felt exposed. My heart and my soul felt exposed to this. To this notion that even in my secrets, hidden sins, and shame, God still extends mercy and invites me into His presence.
Now— I could say, I went straight home, called all my brothers in Christ to confess or talk things through. But that isn’t what happened. I finished the song and went ahead to finish my run. But this sinking feeling of being exposed or so specifically called out did not leave me.
This feeling remained through that Saturday, further contributing to this unknown I had spoken into last week.
I sat in this until Sunday morning and I tuned into an Easter service to celebrate the risen King. But still I was missing something— something was off.
Well, something came up. Rebecca, my girlfriend, sent me this link to a play called Jesus from Sight and Sound Theatre. [Fun Fact: I kind of auditioned for them 3 years ago unintentionally at a theatre conference]. So I decided to sit down that Sunday afternoon to watch this show.
Let me give you a hint:
I did not move for two and a half hours. Something clicked in my heart. Something I had been missing in myself. Something I had been missing in my relationship with God. Something…
About 25 minutes into the narrative (that being John’s narrative), they arrived to the Sermon on the Mount and their depiction of the Prodigal Son touched something in me and I started to crack. I mean— if someone had walked into my room they would have seen an adult man just crying in the corner watching something on his screen. But the show kept going, and going, and going. I didn’t want it to stop.
Then it got to the scene where we meet a demon possessed man who called himself Legion.
They came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes. 2 And when Jesus had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. 3 He lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain, 4 for he had often been bound with shackles and chains, but he wrenched the chains apart, and he broke the shackles in pieces. No one had the strength to subdue him. 5 Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones. 6 And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell down before him. 7 And crying out with a loud voice, he said, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me.” 8 For he was saying to him, “Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!” 9 And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” 10 And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. 11 Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, 12 and they begged him, saying, “Send us to the pigs; let us enter them.” 13 So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the pigs; and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the sea.Mark 5:1-13, ESV
A pretty crazy story right? Well this play just nailed every part of this story. With it they sang this song:
In this song the disciples along with the demon possessed man express the desire that God has to chase after the one, leaving the ninety-nine.
As I was watching this I just knew that His message just touched my heart.
I have loved this idea that I am an alright guy, I am not the worst. Because of this I have somehow convinced myself that Jesus doesn’t need to “save this one,” to save or come chase after me. But His choice to chase after me and choose me is His ministry. Through this I know there are things He is moving in my life to show that He does choose and chase after me. He is just waiting for me to say “yes and,”.
He CHOOSES you. He CHASES after you.
With His resurrection, we are given this gift of mercy and love that He gives willingly to all who listen.
There’s an invitation to come and see. To see and believe.