The other day while out walking with my dog I was listening to a podcast by a well-known Christian speaker. She asked the question: “Do you remember a time when you sinned, I mean really sinned? How did it feel?” I stopped to think on this. I’ve never murdered someone. But I did encourage a friend in my younger days to get an abortion. I’ve never been a thief, although I have, at times, realized I wasn’t charged for something correctly and didn’t go back to the store clerk. I’ve never cheated on my husband. But do those lustful thoughts count? I check in with my mom and dad, through gritted teeth. I put God first. Well, except for the times I put money and my children first. I’m good to my neighbors even though I’ve spoken badly about some. See, I’ve only sinned a wee bit.
I realized that every single time I sinned “just a little” made me feel a “little bit” broken. At times it made me feel a lot broken. The Christian speaker went on to say, “Now imagine Jesus on the cross. He is the only person to walk the Earth who has not sinned. But at that moment His Father placed all your darkness, all your brokenness, all your pain caused by sin on Him. There is no one else who has experienced so much pain. Imagine how He must have felt.” It brought me to tears. It brings me to tears as I write this.
This visual is what I praise God for today. The understanding of Jesus’ pain and sacrifice made for us. I previously hadn’t made an emotional connection to this powerful, earth shaking moment in our time. I had the knowledge but not the emotional response. Baptist teacher Oswald Chambers once said about Jesus on the cross:
The Cross was a superb triumph in which the foundations of hell were shaken. There is nothing more certain in Time or Eternity than what Jesus Christ did on the Cross: He switched the whole of the human race back into a right relationship with God.Oswald Chambers
My father is reading The Saxon series books. In it, a character refers to Jesus as the “Nailed God.” It brought to mind movies I’ve seen showing the crucifixion. With each hammering of a nail through Jesus’ feet and wrists I cried. But it was out of sadness and horror. That day, when I visualized Jesus on the cross pulling, drawing and tearing our sins from us and placing them squarely in His own heart and soul I was overcome with gratefulness and sorrow. I want to apologize to Jesus. His gift to us caused Him so much pain.
It’s a well-accepted fact that when we are forced to work hard for something, say a new car, home, a good job, we tend to take better care of it. I didn’t have to work for the gifts of salvation and redemption. I’ve proven over and over that sin is easy for me to commit. I need to keep Jesus’ pain, his suffering, and His willingness to take mine, closer to mind each and every day. His love for us can only be repaid with obedience and thankfulness.