Romans 10:9 “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
When did you first see Christ Die? It’s an interesting question to really dig into. For those of you who are like me and were raised in church, we had the crucifixion story memorized by the age of 5, and we can’t truly remember the first time we heard the great story. Others of you may have come to Christ later on in life, but had already heard the story that’s long been told. You see, many talk about how people need to hear Christ’s story, but is that really what changes you–simply hearing it?
I do not mean to say that hearing the story is not powerful beyond words, but I think it doesn’t have its full impact until you see the story with your heart.–when it truly grips you and moves you beyond all other experiences you’ve known before. I still remember the first time I truly saw Christ’s death with my heart. Though some may imagine it was at a very young age, seeing that I’m “the preacher’s daughter,” and all, it was actually my junior year in high school. I suppose I was so used to the story that it was hard not to (as egregious as it sound) become board with it. Then one year, one night, my whole perspective changed.
Amazed, Christ Community’s annual Easter production was in full swing, and opening night had finally arrived. During the “Via Dolorosa” scene, I was positioned in such a way that Jesus passed by me while He walking to Golgotha as I wept on my knees. Purely by accidental instinct, I reached out toward John Hobbs, playing Jesus’ character, and he glared right back at me as he came near. He then looked down at my hand which during all the chaos, had brushed his exposed arm. I drew it back quickly, and to my horror, my hand had been covered in his blood. I was not acting anymore. I clinched it to my chest, and I wept and I wept and I wept. His blood was literally…on my hands.
Wow! What a powerful image. Everything He did was for me. He was dying on my cross. His hand were nailed with my punishment. His head was pierced with my crown of thorns. That night, the eyes of my heart were truly opened to the story of the cross, and though I had believed and experienced God many times before, I now had a new appreciation for Jesus like nothing I’d ever experienced. It was tragically beautiful.
Shortly after the scene, I had to change into my dance outfit for the next act, and tried to wash off the blood. Ironically, it faded to an extent, but wouldn’t completely come off. I was okay with that. I kept it there for a reminder. I never want to forget that feeling…that first time…the first time my heart saw Jesus die.