Friday, April 22, 2011

Easter Lessons from a Boy's Group Home: Good Friday

{‎"But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins, He was beaten so we could be whole." -Isaiah 53:5}

This will be the first time that Jon and I will not be at church for Easter in our entire lives (that's a lot of Easter dresses and polo shirts!) You may ask, "Why don't you just take the boys with you?" and to that I would reply, "We have this new kid...that I'm pretty sure would walk up in the middle of the service and tell the pastor why the Christians are all liars and how they stole their religion from the Egyptians...and yeah, he's 12 and knows that is why we are not going.

So it was this little squirt through which God taught me a Good Friday lesson today. Have you ever been to a Good Friday service? The ones I've been to leave me feeling sad, dark and lonely...because Jesus died and left this world on that Friday...but all of that is ok, as long as you know that you are going to an Easter celebration service in three days...

But what about the disciples? Yeah, Jesus said He would rise from the dead in three days, but I don't think they actually trusted or understood what was going on. This is where Little Squirt makes me think of a disciple. No, he is not trying to follow Jesus...but sometimes I feel like God gives us glimpses of what it is like to be Him.

I got up this morning, and the boys are home from school due to the Easter holidays...and I had put out some pancake mix before I went to bed the night, I knew that I would probably regret this, but I also knew that some boys in the house would enjoy making pancakes when they woke up. But when I woke up...the regret set in.

 I found Little Squirt "making pankcakes"...which consisted of a mix bowl of 4 cups of water and 1 cup of pancake mix...poured into a baking pan. When I realized that he needed some direction, he informed me, "Good chefs learn from themselves," meaning that they don't watch or learn from others (which we all know is NOT true).

Then he went to put his baking sheet "pancake" into the oven...and then to turn it on, he turned the knobs for the stove top burners. So, it is totally obvious that he has never cooked anything before, much less pancakes. After taking some direction on how to turn on the oven verses stove, he placed the cooking sheet inside and proceeded to open the oven door every minute to see if it was done.

When I suggested that he let one of the other boys who is like the Pancake Wizard show him how to make them the right way, he said to me, "Can you make pancakes?" and I replied, "I mix them and then Jon cooks them because I have a tendency to burn them." "AAAAAAAHHHHHAAAAAAAA," he raised, "so if you don't know how to make pancakes then you can tell me how to do anything!" "Well, then you could watch the Pancake Wizard, because he knows exactly what he is doing," I persisted. "Just because everyone cooks pancakes one way does not mean it is right...just because everyone is doing something does not mean it is right," he shared. "Just because you say it doesn't mean it is true," he continued to say over and over again.

Much much more dialogue followed, but it was all pretty pointless...I think you get the idea. So you may still be wondering how I felt like God in anyway whatsoever...well, here is how:

If we believe that God is a part of our everyday lives through the Holy Spirit, then you have got to believe that He sees all and understands all we do. That means that He knows when we are doubting Him, thinking that our ideas and choices are better without Him and His guidance through His Holy Word. God has got to be frustrated with me more than He lets on. I mean, how many times have I said, "Just because people in the Bible did it that way doesn't mean it was right..." or "Just because You say it, doesn't mean it's true...I've never seen it's can't be true!"

Furthermore, how many times has God looked at my life as I try to run around and make pancakes in the oven when they have to be made on the stove, and God is saying to me, "Hey, just take a sec and let someone else share with you how to make it all work." And I just run around flinging watery pancake batter everywhere.

There are times I read the Bible and see Jesus asking the disciples to do just that. And they continue to doubt, go back to their old ideals, sink in the water and whatnot. I wonder if Jesus ever felt hopeless? I would say no, because He was 100% God and trusted the Father enough to be tempted by the devil in the most miraculous ways...but if He was 100% human too, He had to get discouraged. And in The Bible, He definitely sounded frustrated with His closest followers at times.

Flashback to the kitchen this morning...I am sitting watching the Little Squirt in his tornado of ignorance and stubbornness and I think...'This is what I look like to God sometimes...this is how I must make Him feel." I want to say never again, I want to return His grace and love with devotion and passion. I want to get off of the cross the devil tries to keep me on, and allow God to resurrect me daily.

And that's my Good Friday lesson for today. What do you think?

Much love,
Emily Elizabeth


  1. Love that you're teaching those boys the Gospel through your marriage and relationship with them, not just leaving that responsibility to your local pastor. :) Praying for endurance for you and Jon!

  2. Thanks for sharing Em! There was a lot of wisdom in that and I enjoyed reading it! I definitely agree with Carrie as well! Love you!

  3. I love your blog Emily :-) Little Squirt sounds like he has a lot of potential to do wonderful things for the kingdom, and I just praise God he's with you and Jon, and feels safe enough with you both to be that spunky and stubborn.

    I love you...your heart for God and these boys is nothing short of beautiful and encouraging to me.

    I love you :-)