It was dusk when I walked the narrow path made of white butcher paper, marked with a male’s naked, red footprints.
High school students had transformed the school gymnasium to recreate a Journey to the Cross. It was an outreach to turn people’s hearts toward Jesus.
By God’s grace and the Holy Spirit, these hearts would be convicted and healed.
Instead of praying: Fix my problems. Show me the way.
I asked God, Show me my SIN.
Show me what action or attitude within me, is offensive, or contrary to Your will.
The very sin Christ bore as He died on the cross to set me free.
As I entered the gymnasium, somber music played from The Passion soundtrack. Black and burgundy cloth, hung from wires, subdivided the gym to create smaller rooms depicting Jesus’ betrayal, trial, scourging, death, and resurrection.
In one area, there was a sign: Take a black scrap of cloth and a piece of chalk. Write a sin, something you wrestle with….then nail it to the cross.
Of my many vices, FEAR surfaced. For what is fear, but a lack of trusting God?
“We can’t trust someone we don’t know.”
That’s what my friend, Loretta, told me years ago.
Since then, I’ve gone from head knowledge, knowing about God, to KNOWING HIM in a more intimate way that satisfies my heart.
And yet, FEAR remains my Achilles heel.
So I scribbled: FEAR; lack of trusting God.
Prior to writing those words, I had glanced inside a small nearby area designated “Prayer Room.” Since it was evening, the room was devoid of people, but I hesitated to enter. After God revealed my sin, this weakness that cripples my faith, I stepped inside.
Pillows and blankets lined the floor, tea lights in mason jars flickered, and white icicle lights hung overhead. I sat down to pray, but my jaw dropped. For next to my ankle was an index card with the word TRUST.
I picked up the card, turned it over. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:4, 5
A few other cards were scattered on the floor. Different words, different verses. But TRUST was the word next to me, the first card that caught my attention.
Coincidence? That a student felt led to write TRUST, two days earlier?
Coincidence? That beckoned me into that prayer room, caused me to sit down in that exact spot?
Tears of joy, not condemnation, filled my eyes. How can I not love my Lord who reveals my sin, but then gently reminds me to TRUST.
- Trust…the Lord with my life, and circumstances beyond my control.
- Trust…the Lord loves me and died for me too.
- Trust…the Lord that I’m forgiven and a new creature in Christ Jesus.
I nailed that scrap of black cloth to a large wooden cross. A cross blackened with the sins of teachers, students, and parents who had gone on this Journey before me.
And like the others, I wrote on a wall near the empty tomb,
One of the many benefits that come when we’re Born Again, and our sins are forgiven: Peace, joy, gratitude, hope, love, victory, freedom, a new identity…..
Have you trusted in Christ?
If so, have you told Him how much you love Him?