For so many years I lived in fear of the cross. Not because of what it meant. Not because I didn’t believe. But because I never felt good enough.
Perfectionism blinding me to the true gift of Easter.
The expectations of others suffocating all that God wrapped up in that cross.
I allowed the religion of others to dictate what the cross meant. Instead of it meaning grace and freedom it meant rules and regulations. It meant fear of judgement if I couldn’t follow their rules. It meant never measuring up.
But through everything something has changed. Easter is no longer just about the cross. It’s so much more.
Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, “Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him in Hebrew, “Rabboni!” (which means, Teacher). John 20:15-16 (emphasis mine)
So for me Easter is more than an empty cross. The empty tomb, the garden. He called her by name. “Mary.” Then she knew. “Rabboni!”
No longer crippled with expectations of perfection unattainable. No longer depending on second hand knowledge of the Rabbi. What happened after the cross gives freedom. Freedom to learn and grow in Him. Freedom to become who God created me to be. Freedom in knowing I am loved not for anything I have done or will do. Freedom simply because He knows my name.