The Easter season has always been a personal time of reflection for me. While I may evaluate my life and own action/choices, I try to focus more on the condition of my heart.
How is my compassion? My empathy? My grace for others? Am I harboring resentments? Sometimes I may not love the answers I find, but as essential as healthy diet, rest and self-care are to our quality of life- heart tune ups are vital too. I don’t often talk about my faith in this space because unfortunately there are Christians who have sullied shared faith with judgement, exclusion and bigotry. I hope that anyone who reads in this space knows my heart is love– Period. In this season of reflection though, I can’t help but consider the final words that Jesus breathed, as he hanged there aching, broken and fading from this life: Father, forgive them, for they known not what they do. (Luke 23:34)
I want to take that loving grace and wrap it snug around myself, Warm, like a freshly scented blanket from the dryer, safe and comforting. Thank you, Jesus, for understanding ME always… Which, isn’t a bad attitude to master, really. I honestly don’t always accept that as reality though, and I certainly struggle giving myself much grace at all. I can reflect on my journey as a wife of 25 years, as an adoptive parent, and as a daughter of broken and damaged people- and I can think of these words there. Within this passage in Luke there is such deep, uncomfortable and hard to grasp truth. They don’t know what they are doing. Hurt people, hurt people. Broken people break. I can’t change how the ones I love the most will react, receive or choose- but I can keep myself in check. When I get wounded by the shards of their moment- can I give them grace? Can I remember that though I FEEL like they should know better, they truly may not?
Men beat, bloodied, relentlessly mocked and then crucified Jesus. Surely they knew it was inhumane and so wrong to take such satisfaction and pleasure from these things, and yet… And yet Jesus himself empathized and showered them with grace and, dare I say it, understanding…
Have you been watching the History Channel series “Jesus: His Life”?
“Jesus: His Life” explores the story of Jesus Christ through a unique lens: the people in his life who were closest to him. Each of the eight chapters is told from the perspective of different biblical figures, all of whom played a pivotal role in Jesus’ life including Joseph, John the Baptist, Mary Mother of Jesus, Caiaphas, Judas Iscariot, Pontius Pilate, Mary Magdalene and Peter.
Each figure takes a turn guiding viewers through the emotional and epic story of the most famous man in history, through his birth, death and resurrection, all conveyed through a combination of scripted drama and interviews with prominent religious and historical experts. Utilizing some of the world’s most respected Biblical scholars, historians, faith leaders and theologians, the series weaves together the canonical Gospels, historical sources and cultural context to create a complete portrait of Jesus – the man and the Messiah. The series finale airs this Monday, April 15 on The History Channel at 8pm ET/PT.