Easter and other things
I’ve wanted to have a blog for ages.
(5 or 6 years of a 21-year old life is a pretty significant portion) but never got around to STARTING.
So here I am. Je me lance. Maybe i’ll explain why the blog is called “Behind Closed Doors” another time — probably not today. Maybe i’ll write about how my schedule has prevented me from starting a blog all these years — probably not today. Hopefully most of my writing will have good grammar and no spelling mistakes — no guarantees. Maybe i’ll reflect on my creative process another time — probably not today.
It bringS me more joy than Christmas. Why? Because Jesus.
On Friday I had brunch with some close friends, and together we read the story of Jesus’ betrayal and crucifixion. After eating and praying together, we walked to the cross on the Mont-Royal. Forgive me for sounding like a millennial, but That cross though. I stood there in the fresh spring sun and imagined a man - “King of the Jews” - nailed there by his hands and feet, wearing a crown of thorns, struggling to breathe his last. Every old church song I ever sang swirled around in my mind: “It was my sin that held him there..”, “Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe..” “Thank-you for the cross, Lord. Thank-you for your nail-pierced hands..”
My gratitude for that old rugged cross only grows year-to-year. The closer I get to understanding just how much grace and forgiveness I require, the more I appreciate what Jesus did. I’m a human that experiences pain, that hurts others, and is frustrated by injustice. My life is part of this imperfect world, but Jesus’ atoning sacrifice gives me hope for the future and peace enough for today.
Yes, Friday happened. Jesus had to die that horrific death. And then Saturday happened. we waited. I spent the day in the studio working on my very first songs ever (!!!) and then, on a whim, begged my roommate who has never cut hair before to give me a brand new haircut. I felt like doing something drastic, and was too impatient to wait until next week. A fringe would be change enough for the moment.. so we went for it. Our kitchen scissors are more dull than a rainy day in Vancouver, but they did the trick and now I feel like the girl from that film, “Kick Ass”.
On Sunday we woke up early and headed to church. If you don’t know me, I live in a city in Canada called Montreal and I am part of a french-speaking church called LaChapelle. It has been 4 years since we planted LaChapelle, and this is our 4th Easter. Due to a miscommunication with the venue in which we usually meet, we almost didn’t have a venue for the most important Sunday of the year.. but I’m convinced that it’s because God just had a different vision for our Resurrection Sunday celebration. This Sunday, we found ourselves at one of the most central theatres, downtown Montreal. 933 seats x 2 services, 45~ baptisms, and 5 drummers on stage (why not). It was actually epic.. and way bigger than any one individual, nor the growing collective of Jesus-freaks that go by the name of “LaChapelle” (we sound like a cult. we aren’t, I promise).
My favorite part about Easter Sunday at LaChapelle was that it wasn’t about us. Not for a second.
Jesus suffered to death on the cross for humanity, but he didn’t stay dead. Nope. He came BACK TO LIFE. He conquered the grave. Death has lost it’s sting. Jesus reigns victorious. And that’s what we were celebrating. And everyone who wanted to join in the celebration could. Because we’re alive and we don’t need to fear death anymore. Love won. Love wins. Peace. Hope. Grace. Forgiveness. JOY. For you and for me and for the widow and the orphan and the dude on the bus who looks like he’s having a bad day - everyone. LIFE to the FULL. How can we know what real love is? By looking at Jesus Christ on the cross. How can we know what real life is? By following the Resurrected King’s footsteps on the daily, fam. (millennial-ese again.. sorry.)
This past summer a very important member of our church family passed away from brain cancer. He fought the good fight, and he finished his race well. And I remember going to his funeral, looking at his swollen face in that casket, and having a numbing sense of peace come over me. “That’s weird,” I thought to myself, “although his body is here, Lukas is not. He’s actually gone.. His life is not here anymore. He has left us for somewhere else.” But where did he go? If he no-longer inhabits the flesh that failed him, where could he be? This is what I realized: Because of Jesus, when our heart stops beating, our souls graduate to heaven for eternity. We actually pass from LIFE to LIFE. Lukas wasn’t with us anymore, but with Jesus in heaven because 2,000~ years ago Jesus CONQUERED DEATH. Yo. Easter would take on a whole new meaning for me this year.
So, Easter. That’s why I sang and danced like crazy at church yesterday. Jesus took away the sting of death and gave us true life. Peace. Hope. Grace. Forgiveness. Joy. My soul is going so well when I take time to remember and celebrate His love and resurrection life.
“For God SO LOVED the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have ETERNAL LIFE.” John 3:16