Day 237

Before Jesus conquered the grave on Resurrection Sunday, He let it know that He was coming for it when He brought his friend Lazarus who had been dead in a tomb for four days back to life.

John 11:43-44 …He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

If you grew up attending Sunday School you probably remember being wrapped in toilet paper on the day that you heard the story of Lazarus… his grave clothes are always mentioned in the telling of his story.  Jesus had grave clothes too, but He didn’t come out of the tomb wrapped like a mummy.

Peter and the “fast disciple” also known as John,  had just heard the news that Jesus’ body was no longer in His tomb and they ran to go see for themselves.  Of course the fast disciple got their first and here’s what happened next.

John 20:5-7 And he, stooping down and looking in, saw the linen cloths lying there; yet he did not go in.  Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; and he saw the linen cloths lying there, and the handkerchief that had been around His head, not lying with the linen cloths, but folded together in a place by itself.

Jesus’ grave clothes had been neatly folded and left in His empty tomb.  Why did John mention that part?  I think it’s because he wanted us to know two things.

One.  Lazarus was not resurrected, he was just brought back to life.  Eventually, he would need those grave clothes again, because eventually he would die again.  Not Jesus.  Those clothes were useless to Him now, because he was resurrected for eternity!  He will never die again!

Two.  Jesus was a carpenter and so was Joseph, His earthly father.  When a carpenter completed a job he would fold up the cloth he had been using to wipe his sweat or dry his hands and place it atop the finished project.  When the person who hired him came to inspect the work and saw a folded towel lying there, they knew that the carpenter had completed his job. Jesus had probably done this himself when he was working as a carpenter and he probably learned it from Joseph.

When the disciples saw the neatly folded clothes they had to have known what Jesus was trying to tell them.  His work was finished.  He had completed His project.  He had conquered the grave once and for all.  I can see John & Peter picking up the clothes and nodding their heads at the subtle yet powerful message that their friend, their savior, Jesus Christ had left behind for them.

I am so thankful that I don’t have to walk around bound by grave clothes because of the completed work of the cross.  Jesus painted a beautiful masterpiece during the 33 years that He lived on the earth, and then, like any artist who was proud of his work, He signed it.  He completed it with His signature, His neatly folded grave cloths.

Romans 8:11  But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.

Rejoice today!  He is risen!  He is risen, indeed!  He is sitting at the right hand of the Father, not in grave clothes, but in ultimate glory!

  1. Jesus conquered the grave!
  2. He is risen!  He is risen, indeed.
  3. The fast disciple wrote about the neatly folded grave clothes.
  4. The Spirit of Him who raise Jesus from the dead dwells in me!!!
  5. Easter has risen to a whole new level for me this year… studying it in depth has been so cool.
  6. Enjoyed my quiet time in the bathtub this morning.
  7. Slept like a baby through the thunder storm last night.
  8. Gus and Papa enjoyed looking at all of the cool cars at the car show this morning.
  9. Beau held her own in the bounce house with all the big kids.
  10. Thousands of Easter Eggs being devoured by all the little locust children.  I’ve never seen so many Easter eggs disappear so quickly.
  11. Jelly beans!
  12. Delicious lunch at 5th St Cafe.  That place never disappoints.
  13. Nana got Gus the stuffed Mario & Luigi he’s been praying for for his Easter basket.
  14. Nana got Beau the ice cream eating Baby Alive for her Easter basket!
  15. Gus got some nice, new Jake pajamas for his basket.
  16. Beau got some pretty Tangled PJs for her basket.
  17. Beau looked absolutely adorable in her Easter outfit.  I’m glad I got to experience that!
  18. Gus in a bow-tie.
  19. J Crew decided to leave the sensor on my shirt and I didn’t notice until a few minutes before church, thankfully my skirt hid it pretty well.
  20. I loved worshipping my King tonight at church.  It was completely overwhelming.
  21. Pastor Robert never waters down the word.  His Easter message was deep and powerful.  Daniel 7!  Amazing!
  22. Full 4:00 service at the GW Frisco campus!
  23. Papa carries a handkerchief… bonus learned how to spell handkerchief tonight.  Who knew it had a D in it?
  24. The kids the cutest little stuffed lambs in their classes at church.
  25. Beau graduated… she’s a Tiny Train now and proud of it!
  26. Yummy roast, potatoes and carrots waiting for us when we got home.
  27. Via Dolorosa. 

Day 232

You don’t hear the name Barabbas used very often these days.  Come to think of it, I have never met anyone with that name.  Try looking it up at babynames.com and you won’t have any luck.  It might have something to do with the fact that it’s a little hard to spell, but I’m sure the most common reason for its unpopularity is that the most well known Barabbas to ever exist was a notorious criminal.

Matthew 27:15-17 Now at the feast the governor was accustomed to releasing to the multitude one prisoner whom they wished. And at that time they had a notorious prisoner called Barabbas.  Therefore, when they had gathered together, Pilate said to them, “Whom do you want me to release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?”

The people voted to save Barabbas and to have Jesus crucified.

The name Barabbas means “son of the father” and signified that he was spoiled, ruined and that satan was his father.  That day at the feast the guilty son got off the hook, and the true son, the son of God, was sent to die on a cross… the cross that was probably intended for Barabbas to hang from.

Barrabas deserved to be beaten, he deserved a crown of thorns, he deserved to have to lug a heavy tree up a hill, he deserved to have nails driven through his hands and feet, he deserved to die on that cross, but instead Jesus took His place… literally.  It just doesn’t seem fair.

I don’t know the rest of Barrabas’ story.  I don’t know if seeing an innocent man die on the cross that was meant for him changed his life, but I do know that it changed mine.

Before I made Jesus Lord of my life, I, like Barabbas was a daughter of the wrong father, satan.  I was spoiled, and ruined, and I, was guilty.  I deserved the death penalty.  I deserved to be punished for my sins.  I deserved to be shamed.  But Jesus took my place.  He gave me my freedom.  He endured the cross for me.  It just doesn’t seem fair.  But that’s how much God loves me!

2 Corinthians 6:18 “I will be a Father to you, And you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the Lord Almighty.”

You don’t have to go through life with the wrong father, Jesus took your place so you could call His father YOUR father and so His father could call you MY son, MY daughter.

  1. Jesus took my place.
  2. Jesus is unfair.
  3. I am not a spoiled, ruined child of satan, I am a redeemed, loved daughter of the most high God!
  4. Scandal of Grace by United. “Too much to make sense of it all, I know that your love breaks my fall.  The scandal of grace, you died in my place, so my soul will live”
  5. Actually felt rested this morning when I got up!  So good to get to bed at a descent hour.
  6. Was trying to decide if I should take Beau to the doctor and just felt like I should… glad I did, because it turns out she has an ear infection.
  7. The option to pick your flavor add in at Walgreens.  Beau took her grape smelling antibiotic like a champ!
  8. Gus to the nurse who was checking Beau’s ear and making her cry – “Get your hands off of my sister!”  He’s a pretty good big brother.
  9. Kids did really good considering we had to wait for quite a while to see the doctor.
  10. Suckers and stickers!
  11. Good health insurance.
  12. Gus has never had an ear ache in his life!
  13. Gus had to miss the Easter story through Easter eggs at church this weekend so we made our own and did it this morning for Bible time.  He loved it.
  14. One, Two, Three by Little Praise Party.  My kids love singing Jesus is Alive!
  15. Finished Beau’s birthday video!
  16. Found the perfect ending song for the video!
  17. Zooey Deschanel.  She has a song on both Gus and Beau’s birthday video this year.
  18. Found Gus a Bowser Mario Race Car while we were waiting on Beau’s prescription to be filled and he played with it all evening long and told me thank you for getting it for him a few times.
  19. Leftover lasagna… better the 2nd time around!
  20. Easter bunny cookies and milk for dessert.
  21. Josh got to spend his night teaching parents about training up champions!
  22. The non stop 10 minute explanation Gus gave me on how a Transformer is built… at least how he imagines it’s done.  Very entertaining!
  23. Gus drew a family picture… it included Josh Hall.
  24. Found a great worksheet to teach Gus his number families with.
  25. Some much needed alone time tonight.
  26. The smell of Gus’ hair pomade.  My hands always smell like it after bath time.
  27. The way Beau runs on her tip toes when she’s excited.