Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Hosanna! 2000 - An Easter Memory - Final

Hi folks.. This will be the last installment of the Hosanna! 2000 series... I hope you've enjoyed, and have been blessed through this Easter season by my memories and how the play changed my heart.

A few days before Easter Sunday, I gave my girlfriend Jenifer a small basket filled with goodies. Candy, a card, and a copy of my Hosanna! rehearsal cd. Nothing spectacular, but a small gesture of friendship.

Thursday before that Sunday was our last day of classes. She and I met in our regular spot for coffee & a study break, and as we parted company, she handed me a CD. "What's this?", I asked. "One of my favorites lately. I got you a copy. I hope you enjoy." On my way off campus, on my way to the church to photocopy early service chorus sheets & practice, I tore open the wrapper, "Third Day"...

The first few songs were cool, but nothing spectacular. I pulled into the parking lot of the church, did my thing, rehearsed all on my own, got a little teary-eyed during a few of the choruses I'd picked, and realized this Easter was going to be AWESOME!

On the way back out, this song popped up...I didn't have the lyric book open, so I didn't know what was coming.
I am a thief, I am a murder
Walking up this lonely hill
What have I done? I don't remember

No one knows just how I feel
and I know that my time is coming soon.
Right here, I was sitting, thinking, "yeah, I'm not that bad, but I sure can relate... he must be speaking metaphorically.. Yeah that's it"
It's been so long. Oh, such a long time
Since I've lived with peace and rest
Now I am here, my destination and I guess things work for the best
and I know that my time is coming soon
Oh I know that's right - I've got this coming for a mile... I haven't had peace, I've been up to my eyeballs with practice, school, work. I've thought too much of myself a few too many times. Yeah, that's about right.
Who is this man? This man beside me
They call the King of the Jews
They don't believe that He's the Messiah
But, somehow I know it's true.
Um, Yeah, He's pretty awesome. I know that. He must be referring to some Sunday service he went to and realized what the truth really is.. yeah, that's it.
And they laugh at Him in mockery,and beat Him till he bleeds
They nail Him to the rugged cross,
and raise Him, they raise Him up next to me

Later, another day, I "heard" the rest of the song. But, at that moment, I pulled my car over into a parking lot, and my entire life flooded my mind. Every minute, from my first memory, to that moment. All the junk, all the garbage, all the stupid things I'd done. All of it. I didn't see where that song was going until right at that moment. "up next to me".... Wow... Guess I deserve it, too. I'm not a murderer, no... but I sure am a sinful mess. Chara was a sinful mess, accusing Peter right to his face, chanting "Crucify" at the top of my voice, looking at "Jesus" for even the brief moment hoping for His execution.

I sat in the car a while, turned the engine off, in what was the most intimate moment of reflective prayer. I admitted I wasn't worth any of it. I didn't deserve heaven, I didn't deserve my life. I wasn't worthy of anything He had to offer, but I will gladly accept.

March 29th, I heard the song again, live. I felt the same way, all over again. The situation was different, I sure wasn't alone, but I heard the same message. The difference this time? I knew the end, and I knew it ended good. Okay, honestly, that song ends better than good, that song ends perfectly.
And I know...Paradise...
Paradise... is coming soon

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