Imagine you’re a three-year-old girl and your dad tells you your favorite bedtime story every night, Cinderella – the Disney version. (Have you read the actual Brothers Grimm version?! It’s good in it’s own way but contains a few very graphic differences! If you want to have nightmares, here’s the link to the original Cinderella story. You’re welcome.)
We can all agree on the highlights (Obviously this illustration is not Disney, but definitely the same story):
And Cinderella and her prince get married and live happily ever after. THE END.
Now imagine one night, dad completely eliminates the part about the shoe. Instead, he ends with Cinderella fleeing the scene and stops there. Or maybe he jumps from the part where they fall in love at the ball to getting married and living happily ever after. Knowing the full story, you wouldn’t be satisfied with that, would you? There’s no way you could eliminate the shoe and still call the story “Cinderella”!
This past weekend we attended a beautiful service with family at their church. The orchestra and choir were heavenly, the Easter lilies sweetly lined the altar, the congregants were beautifully dressed in sharp suits and spring dresses, and everyone seemed to be in joyful spirits. This was nothing short of Easter perfection.
At the end we went into the epic Hallelujah chorus, cue the fireworks. But when we walked out of the building I was a bit dumbfounded – it was like watching one of those movies with an abrupt ending and the credits start rolling immediately and you’re like, “WHAAAT?! NOOOOOOO…!”
Honestly I felt pretty gypped and a little confused. Everything was so well planned, timed, and executed, but somehow the cross didn’t make the cut. I can’t remember hearing that part of the story at all – THE MAIN PART OF OUR STORY! The part of the story that gives meaning to everything! The part where Jesus gives His life and does the impossible for us sinners, so that we can have eternal life with Him!
Of all days, EASTER was the day I wanted to hear this part of the story most. It’s what all of humanity needs to hear the most – it’s the center of the Christian faith, the “main thing”, it’s what love truly is.
Sadly this happens way too often in my personal life as well. It was easy to see how ridiculous it was to leave the cross out of Easter, but during my day-to-day life I don’t as easily recognize when I’m leaving Jesus out of the center of my heart when I choose to focus more on the glitz than the hard rugged cross.
Help me to remember daily Your incredible sacrifice on the cross, that my heart and life may truly be transformed by your grace and love.
❤ amanda mae