How the Cross Changed Me

I wrote this on Easter Friday 2015

I’ve been delaying writing this for the entire day but I finally brought myself to do it. I normally enjoy just posting poetry and leaving everyone to do the figuring out but I think God wants me to be clear on my thoughts for once. Today is a special day to Christians because today symbolises the day Jesus died on the cross. Some people don’t understand why we think there is some sort of symbolism in this day but I hope to shed light. The picture above is basically my life. Whenever people ask when I got saved I always say I don’t know but the honest truth is that I found Jesus in October 2015. I have always been a ‘Christian’ but I was never a Christian. I went to church, I prayed every morning and repeated the same Psalms but it wasn’t from my heart. I knew God as my problem solver so prayer for me was a monologue of me telling God what I wanted regardless of the fact that we were never really on the same page. I was a very hard-hearted person due to certain life experiences so I always believed love was conditional. When I was very young I made up my mind that not everyone who was meant to love you such as your family would actually do so. The mistake I probably made was the fact that because I did not receive love from certain people, I chose not to give it back. I never admitted it but my motto in my life was always “hope for the best and expect the worst” so I harbored negative thoughts in my head. I would imagine people dying or friend’s betraying me not because I was a psychopath but because I wanted to prepare myself for disappointment. My life was perfectly planned in my head. I was going to be a successful doctor followed by a happily married woman at 30 who was involved in a lot of charity work and educational projects. I planned to spend my latter years as a philanthropist so it all seemed well constructed and in my mind I was on the path to success.

Unfortunately for me at the time, my plans were derailed in the summer of 2015. To top off my disappointment I realized there was something wrong with me and I didn’t know how to fix it. I didn’t know anything about Jesus. YES! Sounds crazy right? As Christian as I thought I was, I had no ‘relationship’ with God and I was a mess. I realized that I had anger issues that sprung unexpectedly making my brother the unfortunate victim. My time was mostly spent at home reminiscing on old ‘situationships’ and filling my head with mentally impure thoughts courtesy of my endless binging on TV series. Worst of all, I tried to do everything by myself and it terrified me that I couldn’t. Fear was my best friend and certain situations had drawn me closer to fear leaving me with paranoia and a very unsettled spirit.

So what happened…?

I found a church that I liked and I started learning more and more about what I was missing in my life. The biggest lesson I learnt is that God loves me. It sounds crazy but I acquainted God with a lot of things and love wasn’t one of them. I did my research and learnt that Jesus suffered from anxiety, hematidrosis, was spit on, slapped, punched, and flogged with whips that tore skin so deep the skeletal muscles were made visible, suffered hypervalemic shock, mockery and disgrace all between his arrest and his crucifixion (9 hours). He went through all these things because God wanted to take away everything that we had done that could land us in a pit of fire and give us grace. This innocent man left the comfort of his home to spend time loving people who were so horrible to him. Why would anyone do that? Why would you want to go through pain when you’ve never committed a crime just to clear the names of those who have? It didn’t make sense to me because it was just too much love to be real. Apparently, this is how a father is meant to love a child. My father didn’t love me like that but after studying the bible I learnt that God did. When I was a mess, God still loved me. When I was crying and fearful, he was standing there waiting for me to look to him. I always felt too mature for my age so I never liked to act like a child. With God everything is different. I feel like every time things are going downhill I sit down and zone into prayer and this beautiful spirit gives me comfort in my heart. I never knew I could overcome fear until I learnt that the Lord said in Romans 8 that I am not a slave to fear but I have received the spirit of son-ship. Jesus didn’t die in vain. He died so we could be children of God. He died so our spirits could live and guess what? He rose again. That spirit that brought Jesus back from his setback is what I have as a saved Christian. When the waves come and life storms me with its complications I can smile because I have a Father in heaven that never dies. I have a father in heaven whose son gave me freedom to fear. I have a home up there that is eternal. I have a power inside me from the Holy Spirit so “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). I am no longer afraid. I am no longer impure but when I fall, I get back up because God’s open arms are ready to receive me. I strive for righteousness not religion because I love God and with love comes obedience.

Most of all, I know that his grace is enough for me to keep going and “his power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). I used to condemn myself a lot because I never thought I was good enough for God. I was always too loud, too worried, too weak, too quick to speak and too slow to listen and sometimes I still am. But, I’ve learnt that God is God. God doesn’t need gold or silver or perfectly polished wood, just a clay pot that is faithful and humble. That’s exactly what I am. I am a jar of clay that can me remoulded by God and has been transformed from someone broken to someone beautiful. I planted my mustard seed of faith one day upon the fertile soil that is Jesus Christ and now I am a tree from which living waters flow and I can never be shaken by the ways of the world because Jesus died so that my spirit could be eternal. Even though clay may not seem like the shiniest, the little hole in my clay pot is there so I can water seeds on dry paths and let them bloom and empower in weakness. I am a broken vessel but I’m also a whole one and for the first time in a very long time, I feel safe, not because I don’t have problems because I do, but because I know the act of love which the crucifixion symbolises tells me that I am not alone. I am a child of God. I am Destiny’s child and the invitation to God’s family is extended to every single person on this earth. All you have to do is grab it and hold on to it with faith and an open heart then watch your heart transform and have a domino effect in your life. Only this time, the dominoes don’t fall. They rise upwards.



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