Monday, April 18, 2011


There is blood on my hands.  Under my fingernails, in the crevices of my knuckles, deep in the prints of my fingers...  The sight of it makes my stomach turn, and I anxiously turn on the water and start scrubbing. 

It won't come off.

I add several squirts of soap, and I rub my hands together a bit harder.  Most of the red rinses down the drain, but some remains.  I keep my hands under the hot water, and I close my eyes. 

For a moment I can imagine the BANG BANG BANG as the nails plunged through His hands and into the wood.  And I realize that I am holding the hammer.  His blood is on my hands.

Tomorrow we celebrate Passover.  This is a brand new tradition for our family.  We will read about the Israelites who put the blood of a lamb on their doorposts, and we will celebrate the Lamb of God who willingly shed His blood so that judgment will pass over those who believe in Him. 

Redeemed.  Purchased.  Covered.  Restored.

By His blood.  His precious blood.

This blood that stains my hands tonight comes from a lamb.  Not a spotless lamb, but a simple lamb that I found in the meat section at Walmart.  A lamb that will be our dinner tomorrow night, and will remind us of the incredible sacrifice of grace that was made on our behalf. 

I didn't expect the symbolism to affect me so deeply.  I didn't expect to cry while cutting up the lamb.  I didn't expect my heart to feel anxious and guilty as I tried desperately to scrub the blood off of my hands. 

My Jesus, my Savior...  His love is overwhelming to me.   And the blood on my hands?  Gone.  For he has washed me and made me whiter than snow.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Lost and Found

I notice her right away.  She is clutching a toy under her arm, and has a look of confusion on her face.  I approach her slowly and carefully.  "Do you know where your mommy is?"  She looks up at me with wide brown eyes and shakes her head "no."  I glance around hoping to see the adult in question, but nobody is nearby.  I kneel down and ask her if I can help her find her mom.  She nods and follows me through the aisles.  I ask her what her name is and how old she is, but she just shrugs her shoulders and clutches her toy more tightly.

I imagine her mother frantically searching the store for her beautiful little girl.  I walk a little more quickly, and find a manager who can page the parents.  After finding someone who can help, I reluctantly walk away.  I feel so helpless, so I walk quickly through the store in search of the parents.

I spot them easily.  I recognize the look on their faces.  They look exactly how I imagine I would feel if it was one of my little ones missing.  I approach them swiftly and tell them where I left their daughter.  They don't utter any words of thanks, but take off across the store to reunite with their princess.

A few minutes later, we cross paths again.  This time the family is intact and the mother rushes to me to shake my hand and offer unnecessary gratitude.  With tears in her eyes she thanks me for helping her daughter.  What once was lost, was found.  I tell her of my five little ones at home, and how mine like to wander off, and I try to make her feel normal instead of terrible. 

I wander the aisles thinking about what just transpired.  The look on those parents' face haunts my thoughts.  The fear that they felt was overwhelmingly apparent in the lines of their face, and the relief and love that washed over them after they found their daughter was so emotional to watch.

I can't help but wonder how my God feels when I wander away from Him.  I imagine His sadness, and the relief that washes over Him when I finally come back home.  I imagine the joy on His face as I take His hand and follow Him.

My Abba.  My Daddy.  My Heavenly Father who loves me so much and wants me to stay with Him on the narrow path.  But oh how often I choose to go chasing after the toys on the wide path, wandering away from my Daddy.  And then I roam around with a toy clutched tightly under my arm, wondering why I feel all alone.

The good part though, is that unlike the family at the store, my God doesn't lose me.  He sees me and knows right where I am all the time.  He isn't lost.  I am.  

It's so beautiful.  All I have to do is cry out "Abba!" and He is right there to scoop me up, hold me tight, and help me let go of my toys.  What an incredible Dad.