Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday Through the Eyes of a Wife and Mother

Good Friday

Through the Eyes of a Wife

We know Jesus refers to us as his bride. But did you know that in the 1st century, (you know, the days when Jesus walked) when a young Jewish couple would get married, the groom would take a cup of wine, offer it to his bride and say, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood which I offer to you.”

And if she took it, if she drank of it, she accepted his life and offered him hers, and the two were betrothed, love sealed by a cup to the lips.” --Ann Voskamp

The Upper Room was really a marriage ceremony, with words familiar to the disciples ears. As if he said, “Do you ___________, take me, this man to be your husband, to have and to hold from this day forward?” And with the ring passing over the knuckle, with the lips pressing to the cup, life is forever changed. With this vow, this covenant a new identity is born.

And like many newly weds, the disciples stumbled from the Upper Room not knowing what it all meant, unprepared for the twists and heartache to come. But oh, the glory of the oneness that was to come. The death and dying, the every day dying that would meld the hearts to one.

Through the Eyes of a Mother

Four days. Four days is a really long time to a child. I know this especially now, as my daughter not so patiently awaits Easter and the coming of grandparents. I also know a child can form a heart connection in an instant. Ellie walked away from one play date with a girl she was meeting for the very first time with a contented declaration that, “Kimberly is my best friend forever.”

That's why this year when I read about Passover, my mother's heart felt it real and raw. The family was to take the lamb away from the other sheep and care for it for four days, which is plenty of time for not just a child, but grown ups too, to form a bond.

I have band any form of pet from our home. Partly because I don't need one more little body to feed or clean up after or keep alive. And partly because we don't want our children to go through the heartache of separation when we up and move across the world again. So I've never seen my children bond with a cute and cuddly someone, but oh, I can imagine.

Pinned Image

What I can't fathom is intentionally having my children bond with a furry little lamb only to have them four days later watch the knife slit it's little throat. The blood would drain out amidst their screaming and tears.

But here's what my mothering has taught me. Children learn by watching, touching, doing, not by being told. No lecture teaches what experience does. Nothing could brand the reality of blood spilled for them more than that little dying lamb. Death passes over them. Now they can live, really live, because of the blood of the Lamb.

And then there is where this wife and mother's heart can hardly go.  To the cross.  To where the Groom, the Son hangs upon a tree.  I cannot let myself fully feel the pain of the disciples who watched their husband crying out in agony.  Nor of Mary who must have caressed her child's limp and lifeless body brought down from the cross.  The thought is too much.  But today I dare.  To embrace that which my Beloved did for me.  

Blessed Good Friday, Friends.     

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