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God was released and he moved

April 6, 2007

For much of my life, even though I was raised in a traditional protestant home and church, I really only celebrated Easter Sunday. I knew Jesus died and rose again, but to be honest, the meaning of this holiday and the practices around it meant very little to me. I felt empty and confused when people spoke of how amazing and important Easter was for Christians because it wasn’t that for me.

Over the last few years that has changed. First, I lost my father at Easter time due to a battle with cancer. This season reminds me of him and all the ways he impacted my life. Even more importantly though I have learned about and gained understanding of what Easter is all about. You have to see the whole story. Knowing about Christ coming into Jerusalem, the political and culture situation, and about the Passover festival and practices adds such depth.

Today is Good Friday. People often ask why it is called “Good”. Until Christ’s death God lived among his people, around his people, and with his people, yet when his son hung on a cross though that all changed. Up until the crucifixion God had lived in the holy of holies in the temple. He was near his people, but they couldn’t access him directly. The priest was the only one who could come near, and only one priest once a year could actually enter the holy of holies. When Christ died that all changed. He paid a price that we can not fathom the extent of while we are in the life. In an instant everything in the world as we know it changed. Satan lost and God won. The curtain in the temple was torn, not just a little but from top to bottom. God was released, set free, and he moved. God changed his residence that day. No longer would he reside in the holy of holies, but he moved into the hearts of those who believed in him and accepted him as Lord and Savior. He was no longer among/around/with his people, but now he is in his people!

I have relationship with God that is deeply personal. When his residence moved he moved into my heart. That means my heart is his holy of holies and my body is now his temple. I can’t leave him at home or not take him with me. He is always there. All I do, say, think, believe, and act on are influenced by his presence in me. I can not be separated from him. We are combined so fully together that we are one.

Today IS Good Friday. It is a time to recognize the pain, sorrow, loss, and death in our lives. It is a time to commemorate what Christ did for me. It is also a time to realize that because of Christ’s sacrifice I am not alone, I share my life with someone who loves me more than any other, and I have a reason for hope and joy. Thank you Lord for moving into my heart and life. I am so sorry for my sin and brokenness that cost you so much. I recognize the price paid for me, and I welcome the new life that it brings. I want you fully and completely to be in my life and to lead my life. You are my purpose and passion.

(Special thanks to authors John Eldridge and Beth Moore for helping me to finally see the truth about the price Christ paid and how it changed my life.)

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