When one of my nephews was just five or six, he and his sisters went to church with my mom. Having not attended Sunday School much in his young life, he was new to the stories of the Bible and the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ life.
At one point in the sermon, the preacher announced quite boldly that Jesus had died, and hearing this news for the first time, my nephew was shocked. He turned to my mom, a horrified look on this face.
“Jesus died?” he whispered loudly, wondering how the rest of the church could take this news so casually.
Mom shook her head, trying to quiet his astonishment.
“When did he die?” my nephew continued, wanting to get the full account of this apparently recent news. It would seem no one had told him about Jesus’ death before. At least not that he remembered.
Realizing that this could go on, my mom briefly told the story in whispered tones: “Jesus died for our sins, but now he is alive again. He’s fine. He’s in heaven with God.”
My nephew was relieved.
“We’ll talk about it later, ok?” my mom asked, hoping they wouldn’t have to leave the service.
As we make our way through Holy Week, it’s easy to come to the cross of Christ on Friday and forget the outrage that happened there, the shock that came to the disciples watching their Lord die, the horror of Mary, standing near the puddles of blood dripping off her son.
If we come to the cross as a child, though, hearing this story through the ears of innocence and trust, we see it as it is. Just like Susan DiMickele
‘s daughter, who sat on her Mommy’s lap through a Passion Play when she was just three, asking at each turn, “Is that the real Jesus? Or the fake Jesus?” Because she could see the tragedy unfolding there at Golgotha, and she felt deeply for the man there hanging on the cross.
But there’s also the jubilation that children bring to the Easter story. Like Ann Kroeker
‘s son who understood the Resurrection for the first time as his sister opened the last Resurrection Egg. Empty.
“It’s empty” he had said, disappointed
. And then his family shared the good news of the empty tomb, the significance of Jesus now living with the Father in heaven again. And he got it, oh how he got, running through the house shouting “He’s alive, He’s alive!”
Join me for regular jaunts around The High Calling network, randomly visiting fellow bloggers, soaking up their words and ideas, and then coming back here to write about them from my perspective. This is what The High Calling network is all about, after all.
Our site is about casting a vision that is clear enough and inspiring enough that our readers can run with it on their own sites. We then spend the majority of our editorial time listening to them on their sites and helping them shine as writers. We believe in the power of the laity so much that we are relying on them and their audiences to help spread the vision that has been given to us. – Marcus Goodyear, senior editor, thehighcalling.org (from “The Challenge, Strategy, and Execution of Combining Web Properties” by Dan King on churchcrunch.com)
Each Thursday, consider going “There and Back Again” yourself. It’s simple.
1.) Choose another High Calling Blogger to visit. It can be someone you have “met” before, or do what I do, and work your way through the “Member Posts” section of thehighcalling.com to meet someone new.
2.) Visit his blog, digesting the message until it becomes something that you can write about.
3.) Go back to your blog and write about it, being sure to link to the post that gave you the idea so that your readers can visit, too.
4.) Add the button above to your blog so your readers know you are participating in “There and Back Again.”
5.) Go back to the Network blog and leave a comment so your new friend can feel the link love!
6.) Complete the journey by returning here, to Wide Open Spaces, and enter your link so that we all can benefit from the new High Calling connection you have made.