Holy Week, Holy Life

What does it mean to live a holy life?  How do you define it?

Is the holy life reserved for those called or ordained into the priesthood or carry an official license or ministerial degree?

An ‘Unholy’ Life?

It’s been over a year since I returned to full-time work in a secular capacity.  What was initially intended to be a temporary assignment has turned into a more permanent position.  I didn’t realize the affect this would have on my writing or my ministry connections.

At times it feels very unholy.  Is it really unholy or is it just an attitude in my mind?

What makes a life holy?

Is it the exterior dos and don’ts—following the commandments and acting righteous?  Or is it derived from the inner life?  Jesus called out the Pharisee’s on this attitude in Matthew 23:25-26 when he said:

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.”

Stinging words for sure!  And they were said to the religious leaders of that time.

Defining a Holy Life

Jesus calls us into various forms of ministry in and out of the church.  For this season in my life, I’m called to take my servant attitude and love for others into a rapidly changing office environment, putting aside my desires to write and serve in organized ministry.  While it’s been a difficult pill to swallow, it doesn’t make me or my work unholy or less important than it was before.

So what does a holy life look like?  Here are some things to ponder in seeking to lead a holy life:

Redefining Holiness

Holy Week and Easter gives us a chance to redefine what holiness means to us.  It’s a time to invite Jesus into our inner lives and clean out the cup.

Jesus’ death and resurrection are the most holy and loving moments in the history of the world.  Will we give it the time and attention that it deserves?  Will we let Jesus deep inside to let us see our holiness from His perspective—what we truly mean to Him?  Will we spend time with Jesus and show Him what He means to us?

Our holiness is not defined by what we do (in or outside of ministry work).  Our holiness is defined by what Jesus did for us on the cross.  He sees us as holy.  And that is what makes us holy—despite our sin, our shame, our brokenness, our imperfections, and our pride.  Our job is to live a life worthy of His love and sacrifice.

He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. (2 Timothy 1:9-10, NIV)

Let us join together in celebrating our holiness this Resurrection Sunday! Happy Easter!

Holy Week, Holy Waiting

I am excited! Tomorrow is Easter Sunday, and I feel like a kid who is eagerly awaiting Santa Claus to arrive.  I can’t even remember what I believed about Easter as a kid and the Easter Bunny—real or unreal.  Yes, I partook in Easter eggs hunts at various times.  It must’ve been at the Catholic Church we attended when I was young.  Unfortunately both of my parents are gone now and I can’t get those details of my childhood filled in.

My father rarely went to church with us.  It was always my mother who got us ready and dragged us to Catechism (Catholic Sunday school).  I think my father must’ve been what our pastor calls ‘Chreasters.’  Those are people who only go to church on Christmas and Easter.  I was one of those people in years gone by as well.

Almudena Cathedral, Madrid, where I worshiped one day while on mission to Spain, October 2014.

Almudena Cathedral, Madrid, where I worshiped one day while on mission to Spain, October 2014.

Church as a Priority 

I am at a stage in my life where I routinely go to church year-round, trying to give each weekend service a place of priority and honor.  Christmas is, of course, a special time to celebrate Jesus’ birth.  However, Easter feels especially sacred and uplifting to me.  There are many reasons for that.

  1. It hasn’t been over-commercialized like Christmas.
  2. It doesn’t come with the holiday parties and stress of holiday expectations.
  3. It hasn’t been made into a non-Christian holiday.
  4. It comes in the spring, when flowers are blooming, the days are getting longer, and the sun is starting to shine.
  5. It is preceded by Lent—a time of deliberate prayerful preparation to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection.
  6. It signifies how to acquire salvation and eternal life—with one simple decision to accept Jesus at face value, as the Son of God.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”  John 3:16, NIV

WP_20150328_012Waiting for the Story to End

Lent has ended, and now are the days of waiting—the three days between Jesus’ brutal crucifixion on Good Friday (yesterday) and his resurrection on Easter Sunday.

We know how the story ends.  Does that make the waiting easier?  Does it make it irrelevant or less interesting?  If we knew the ending to the books we read, would we stop reading them?  Maybe that depends on whether or not it is a good ending—one we like.

The Easter Story is the greatest story ever told!  I never tire of hearing it, especially so in a solemn church service like I did last night.  (Read the Passion of Christ in John 18-19:42.) It should make us shout for joy!

Because the waiting isn’t just for Easter, it’s for the return of Jesus.  Celebrating Easter, Holy Week, and Lent is ultimately celebrating in the here and now what our future brings.  There is no mystery to the ending.  However, there is mystery and intrigue in how we live in anticipation of what is to come.

Our lives don’t have to be mundane and boring.  We can approach our days and our ways with the same excitement and fervor with which we celebrate Easter.  There are blessings in it for us, for those we are in relationship with, and for those we come in contact with.

WP_20150330_001Easter: A New Beginning!

Easter marks the end of waiting for the Messiah, for us now and for the Jews and Gentiles over 2,000 years ago.  Some might say the ending was marked by the birth of Jesus.  I can’t argue with that.  However, my point is that Jesus’ death and resurrection marks the fulfillment of over 300 Old Testament scripture that foretold His ministry, death, and resurrection.  The resurrection is the linchpin of our Christian faith.

Easter really marks the beginning. It is the beginning of our Christian lives.  It is the beginning of the Church.  And that makes me giddy like a child—and worth the wait. It’s been a great week of anticipation.  It’s been a great week of holy waiting, filled with church services, fasting, and prayer.  I’m ready to celebrate.

Christ is risen!  He is risen, indeed!

Fellowship Fridays Featured Post & Book Giveaway

Earlier this year I decided to start adding my posts to ‘link-up parties’.  Link-ups are opportunities for bloggers to share their writing to a wider audience of readers with similar interests.  I’ve noticed that some bloggers share their posts on lots of sites every week.  I personally don’t know how they do that.  It’s a lot of work–if you follow the rules–which include linking to the host blogger’s post, reading other posts on the list, and writing a comment related to the post.

Link up partyAnyway, I chose two sites that most closely matched my faith values and also exposed me to good writing from Christian women.  One of those sites was Christian Mommy Blogger (Fellowship Fridays).

A Welcome Connection

A few days ago I got a welcome email from Julie at ChristianMommyBlogger.com.  My post from the previous week so resonated with her that she chose to feature it on her blog.  Her email in turn connected with me as she referenced attending the Triduum services at her church during Holy Week–something I’ve also done for the last few years.  And so a kindred spirit was found online.

Sometimes all it takes is that one connection, that one opportunity to reach out to someone, to risk being known, and to be vulnerable.  It’s not an easy thing to do.  When I do, the rewards can be great.

Featured Badge CMB 1Julie’s decision to feature my post made my heart leap for joy because I knew that God was giving me confirmation to keep blogging.  He also reminded me that my call to write is not about being featured this week or maybe next.  It is still for an audience of One.

Last week Julie was blessed by something God laid on my heart to write.  Who knows who it will be next week.  Maybe it will be you.

Fellowship Fridays Feature Post 

Here is an excerpt from Julie’s post:

Today’s featured post is Holy Week, Holy People.  It was written by Ardis Nelson and posted on her blog, Making Me Bold.  She linked it up last week on Fellowship Fridays 18. As I read it, all I could do was nod my head as I received in her written words, confirmation of what was preached during the Good Friday service at my church.

On Good Friday, I was brought to my knees by that stark brutality with which Jesus’ humanity was assaulted in a failed attempt to blot out his divinity.  In the sermon, our pastor sought to make sense along with all of us of this hugely incomprehensible sacrifice.  And he said, “Jesus could follow through with God’s will for His life because Jesus knew who He was and he knew whose He was.”

Identity.  Purpose. Faith.

Just as Jesus had those and they enabled Him to lay down His life for us; we have those to help us work out our faith in the here and now.

When I read Ardis’ post this week, I was nodding because she touched on identity, purpose and faith in her post.  Read it! You’ll be so glad you did!  When I got to this sentence in her post, my eyes just welled with tears: “As you enter into these last few days of Holy Week, remember who you are, and whose you are.”

Just as the pastor’s words struck me on Friday; Ardis’ words echoed and confirmed that sentiment for me.  As I hope it does for you!  And I think Ardis’ words will stay with me not just in the echoes of the Easter season, but all year round. Some would call this a coincidence; but as Ardis told me in a message: Coincidences?  I think not!  God is good to align these connections for His will and His ways.” 

I couldn’t agree more! It’s not a coincidence! It’s not a coincidence even that you’re all here reading this post.  And it’s not a coincidence that you share the love of God with others through your blogs and through your lives.  Thank you Ardis for sharing this post and touching our lives in this way! Read more about Ardis here. And check out her book, Journeys to Mother Love!

Journeys To Mother LoveEnter to Win

In honor of Julie’s selection of my post on Christian Mommy Blogger, I’m giving away a free autographed copy of Journeys to Mother Love.  Comment below or in the comments on my featured post, Holy Week, Holy People to be entered in the drawing. You can also ‘like’ my Facebook page or subscribe to my blog (in the right sidebar). One entry for each that you do–up to three entries total.  Entries close on midnight PST on Sunday, 5/4/14, just in time for Mother’s Day. (Shipped only to U.S. addresses.)

A Lenten Journey Surprise

As I’ve done the last few years, I prepared for Easter with a Lenten fast from alcohol and sweets.  What was different this year was that much to my surprise my 16-year-old son decided to observe a fast as well.

lenten-journeyHow it all Began

About the same time that Lent began, my son and I started a new bedtime routine.  We read a daily devotional and then prayed together.  On the evening of Ash Wednesday, he asked me about the ashes on my forehead which led to a conversation about Lent.  (By the way, observing Lent, or Ash Wednesday, is not exclusively for Catholics as some mistakenly believe.)

The next day after school he announced he was giving up video games for Lent!  My heart leapt for joy at his sacrificial offering.  I don’t remember what I said that night.  I didn’t ask him about giving anything up himself.  When he told me his decision the next day, he was excited.

My husband and I have had discussions with our son about the amount of time he spends on video games in the past.  Sometimes those discussions turned pretty heated, and he’d lose his gaming privileges.  We’ve also suggested alternative ways of using his leisure time.  Nothing else ever seemed to interest him.

And that's not all of it!

My son’s video game collection–and that’s not even all of it!

However, as Lent started my son was excited to share his choice—and even recognized how hard it would be.  Those first few days he admitted to me that his thoughts would turn to gaming.  He learned to turn his attention elsewhere — sometimes to God, and other times to his studies.  Those thoughts diminished over time.

The End of the Journey

As the 40-day journey grew closer to Holy Week, we talked about what he would do after Easter.  Would he return to his old gaming behavior?  Would he continue his fast?  I shared with him my previous Lent experiences—ranging from returning to immediate gratification with candy on Easter Sunday to abstaining for a prolonged period.  He has opted to return in moderation.

What excites me about this year’s pilgrimage to Easter is not so much that he stopped gaming, it’s that he (and us together) started a great ritual of connecting at the end of the day.  I would often forget, and he’d remind me to join him for our devotional and prayer time.  He also started reading the Bible again and occasionally writing in a journal.

My son and our dog, one of his best friends.

My son and our dog, one of his best friends.

In God’s Timing

I know a lot of this is only possible because my son made a decision to try medication again for his ADHD a few months ago.  He is a changed person.

The medication has given him access to areas of his brain that before were preventing his behaviors from aligning with his desires.  It has allowed him to establish new homework routines, focus on his studies, become more social and succeed in school.  In turn, he is now making more adult decisions and able to find a part of his self that was inaccessible before.

I’m very thankful that we went down this road with him.  I’m grateful that he persevered over the last few years.  I praise God for His timing in all of this (yet again!) and how my son is actively pursuing his relationship with Him.  I’m also glad that I was able to model something to him in the past and that he caught that behavior on his own.

Surprised by God

I had hoped that my son would actually write this post for me (another thing we talked about during Lent), but he is busy with his studies.  He did, however, quickly volunteered to help with the photos and captions.

Surprised by GodWhen I asked him what he’d like to share about his Lenten Journey, he said, “It was a beneficial experience for me.  It helped me to know God better and do well in school.”  That’s a lot to get out of a 16-year-old who is filled with new hope and finding his way in life.

As far as my fast, I’m still abstaining—for now.  I’m embracing the joy of getting to know my son in a deeper way.  That was my Lenten surprise.

Did God surprise you on your journey toward Easter?  I’d love to hear your story.

This post is listed on Christian Mommy Blogger/Fellowship Fridays and Missional Women/Faith Filled Friday.

 

Holy Week, Holy People

Holy Week—the pinnacle of the Christian faith. It starts with Palm Sunday—the remembrance of Jesus’ entrance to Jerusalem on a donkey while surrounded by crowds cheering ‘Hosanna’. It ends on Easter Sunday, with the Good News of the empty tomb. He is risen!  In between is the story of sacrificial love and gruesome suffering that led to the exchanged lives that Believers in Christ receive.Holy Week Faith Matters

It is not unusual for my mind to be on matters of Christian faith. I am not a trained pastor. I haven’t attended seminary. I don’t pretend to be a religious scholar. So why would I spend time on Holy Week sitting down to write a post about it?

It is because FAITH matters! And YOU matter to God!

If you are anything like me, you may not have grown up believing that, or maybe you still have doubts about it to this day. The root of that doubt doesn’t lie with God. It lies to a large degree with the formation of your identity as a young child and your family of origin.

You matter to God

Childlike Faith

In Luke 18:16-17, Jesus says “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

Was Jesus excluding adults in His Kingdom? No, He was reminding us of the innocence of a child. He was telling us to trust—a characteristic that we often lose in childhood due to shame, disappointments, emotional wounds, abuse, etc. This mistrust or absence of innocence can be brought on by a traumatic incident and sudden loss, or may be due to negative messages that over time we integrate into our souls as unworthiness. With those kinds of identity messages being heaped on us at an early age it’s no wonder we reject God or don’t believe we are who He says we are.  (I know because I have struggled with that myself.)*

My-identity-in-Christ

Who Are We?

We are Holy People!

Hard to believe?  Then consider the standard you are using to determine the validity of that statement. Are you believing the father of all lies, the devil (John 8:44)? Or maybe you are comparing yourself to the Heroes of the Faith praised in Hebrews 11.

Are you saying, “I’m no Moses”, or “I don’t have faith like Abraham?” These Fathers of our Faith ended their lives well, but they had many sinful acts in their lifetimes. Moses murdered an Egyptian and fled to Midian (Exodus 2). Out of fear for his own safety, Abraham passed off his wife Sarah, as his sister, allowing a king to take her as his wife (Genesis 12). These heroes of our faith were broken people who failed, but God still used them, just like He uses us.

Holiness

Proof of our Holiness

How can we consider ourselves holy? Romans 10:9 says, If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Jesus sacrifice was the price to make us holy in God’s eyes. God doesn’t see our sins anymore. We are the ones who condemn ourselves and continue to act like or believe we are unworthy.

Still having a hard time seeing yourself as holy—or that God would consider you holy? I grew up thinking (mistakenly so, by the way) that saints were only those people who were canonized by the Catholic Church. However, there are many verses in the Bible that reference God’s people as saints. For instance, Paul uses the term saints over and over again in his greetings to the New Testament churches. When our time comes to leave this life, Psalm 116:15 tells us: Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints (New King James Version).

As you enter into these last few days of Holy Week, remember who you are, and whose you are. Your holiness was paid for with a price. The proof is in the empty tomb. He is risen indeed!

Empty Tomb

*For a great book on our identity in Christ, read Identity Crisis: Reclaim the True You by Tamara J Buchan, or better yet, attend one of her amazing retreats.

Featured Badge CMB 1CHANCE to WIN: This post was selected as the featured post on Christian Mommy Blogger.  If you arrived by way of that site, please comment below how this post touched you to be entered in a drawing for an autographed copy of my book, Journeys to Mother Love.

MORE CHANCES TO WIN!!  ‘Like’ my Facebook page or subscribe to my blog (on the right sidebar).  One entry for each that you do–up to three entries total.  Entries close on midnight PST on Sunday, 5/4/14.

This post is listed on Christian Mommy Blogger/Fellowship Fridays and Missional Women/Faith Filled Friday.

 

The Road to Spain, Update 1 ~ Project Scope

Welcome to my inaugural update on my road to Spain.  The days are quickly passing by as the date of my arrival in Spain (June 24th) approaches, yet I haven’t made any fanfare on my blog or posted any updates since I bought my tickets in January.

Ninety Days

A few weeks ago when I hit the 90-day mark (during Holy Week), I felt like a huge burden had been placed on my shoulders and there would be no way I’d be ready in time.  As strange as it may seem, I had the sense that the 90 days remaining for me would be like Jesus road to Jerusalem.  Seriously!

90 day challengeI started to think about how so much psychology and health research touts the benefits of a 90-day program for things like diet or exercise changes, lifestyle changes, changing your thinking patterns, recovery and addiction rehabilitation, etc.  This led me to think about all the things I hadn’t done to prepare for my trip yet—the big things, preparing to speak while there, learning Spanish, researching Spain (culture, sights, food, etc.), losing weight and exercising.  It was way too much for me to think about.

So I frantically started to work simultaneously on these things.  There just didn’t seem to be much progress and the stress continued to mount.  Finally this week while in a time of dedicated prayer, I got a clear revelation from God.  It led to a huge shift in my attitude and felt like the weight of the world was taken off my shoulders.

Scope CreepScope Creep

The easiest way I can explain it is to put it in terms like I would as a project manager.  It’s called ‘scope creep’.  That is when the scope of a project starts to go beyond its original intention.  (I guess God wanted to put it in terms I would understand.)  He brought me back to the original purpose or scope of my trip—to invest in people.  I am going to meet Rosa, to build relationship with my Spanish family and to write about it.

This isn’t a surprise to me, but what I realized in the process was that my speaking in Spain was sidetracking me from the goal.  Sure it would be amazing to share my story with others in Spain.  Sure it would be amazing to sell books, grow my platform or promote Pedro’s music while there.  (All the ‘shoulds’ a writer repeatedly hears about how to be successful.)  But that is not the purpose of this trip.  Those are incidental benefits.  As disappointing as it is, I am letting go of my desire to speak while in Spain.  Instead I am open to what God has in store for me there.

I don’t want any regrets about this trip of a lifetime.  I wouldn’t be going to Spain if it wasn’t for the miraculous events that happened between Rosa and me the year our mothers died.  I know God is using this story to touch others who have lost their parents or are seeking a second chance to restore relationship with a parent.  I trust that He will use this story in Spain as well—how and when the time is right—even if it’s just one person at a time.

The 10-Week Countdown Begins

The 10-Week Countdown Begins

Refocused

I know this story inside and out because I lived it.  It transformed me.  I am ready to go—even now.  My attention is turned back to getting my mind and body ready to take it all in—like any other normal tourist would do—including learning Spanish.  It is still a lot to do, but I feel refocused and realigned with my purpose.

And, yes, there is a crucifixion going on here.  It is the part of me that wants to do it all and have it under control.  But I promise, there won’t be any physical blood loss—just occasional moans or groans as I swallow my pride once again and learn to trust Him more fully.

So sit back, and enjoy the view as I travel on the road to Spain over the next ten weeks!

Acts of Service, Part 1 ~ Wash My Feet

Although Holy Week and Easter Sunday celebrations are over, my mind is still on the events of last week and one particular act Jesus did for His disciples—and ultimately for us.  It was his humbling act of washing his disciples’ feet (John 13:1-17).

Being Served

On Thursday evening, at a church service I attended in celebration of the Lord’s Supper, attendees were invited to participate in a foot washing ceremony.  People were slow to come forward and not everyone participated.  I guess, it’s not for everyone, but to those who participated, I’m sure it left them with a sense of humility and reverence.Foot washing

I first participated in a foot washing ceremony at a women’s retreat several years ago.  It was at a time in my life when my faith was being renewed and stretched in ways I’d never experienced before.  I didn’t jump at the chance then, but prayerfully waited and emptied my inner self before submitting to this act of humility.  It was very freeing and left a memorable mark on me—one that I recreated as a final act of service for my mother after she passed away.

Serving My Mother

Washing my mother’s feet wasn’t something I planned to do in advance of her passing.  But on the plane ride back home to take care of her funeral arrangements and memorial, I felt the Lord put this desire on my heart.  I had never even heard of doing it for a deceased person and thought that might sound strange.  However, I knew that bodies were anointed with oils in biblical times—like was done for Jesus—and it just seemed to be the right thing to do.

My family and I were only allowed one viewing of my mother’s body before they cremated her remains.  I knew the funeral home would have to agree to my request.  I was nervous about asking and prayed about it in advance.  They agreed, even setting up the facilities and giving us the privacy to wash my mother’s feet.  The tears flowed as I dabbed water on my mother’s feet and told her my final thoughts and prayers on her behalf.

Serving OthersWashing my mother’s feet was just one of the many powerful and beautiful ways that the Lord allowed me to serve and honor my mother in her parting.  If you are not a Christian or have never experienced something as humbling or selfless as this kind of act, I imagine it may sound somewhat strange or even ridiculous in nature.  I would’ve thought the same in years past myself.

Serving Others

The point is not to go around physically washing others’ feet.  Jesus used this symbol of humility and obedience to model to his disciples, and to us, to serve others.

Since my mother’s passing, my perspective on how I serve others has taken a dramatic shift—a Holy Shift, if you will.  It isn’t generally in structured ministry opportunities at my church.  It isn’t even in a non-profit setting.  Besides my writing, I’ve chosen to serve others through opportunities to connect over coffee, email, Skype and now in the speaking realm.  It may not look like ‘serving,’ but it is meeting the needs of others as we share Jesus’ message of hope and healing.  And, as followers of Christ, that is His call to wash each other’s feet.

Holy Week, Holy Movies

One of the things I remember about the Easter season growing up were the religious movies we watched.  My first recollection of a spiritual movie was “The Robe”.  Even as a child I was moved by it and the message of ultimate sacrifice and unconditional love the lead characters (Richard Burton and Jean Simmons) displayed in the final scene of the movie.  (I won’t give away the ending if you’ve never seen it.)  It is still one of my favorite Easter movies.  “The Ten Commandments” with Charlton Heston was also a family favorite.The Robe

In 2004, Mel Gibson produced “The Passion of the Christ” taking spiritual movies to a new level.  It was violent and highly controversial.  It was incredibly gripping and painful to watch.  I left the theater emotionally raw after watching the realistic depiction of Jesus crucifixion.  At the same time I remember thinking it would be something I should see every year as a reminder of what Jesus endured for the sake my soul.  Nine years later and I still haven’t been able to watch it.  The visual images are that powerful in my mind.

Passion of the ChristThis year I have a new favorite spiritual movie that has given me much pause about my Christianity.  It is “Les Misérables”.  Like “The Passion”, it is dark and violent at times, but the music, lyrics, and redemption message, carry you through the movie to its tear-jerking and powerful conclusion.

The movie opens with the song “Look Down” and the release of Jean Valjean from prison after 19 years.  After word of his release, Valjean, played by Hugh Jackman, sings about his freedom, while the prison guard, Javert, played by Russell Crowe, reminds him his name is “24601” and that he’ll always be a slave.  Although technically free, Valjean is a marked man and must carry his papers with him wherever he goes.  He is bitter and sings “I’ll never forgive them for what they’ve done”.

Les MiserablesAfter an encounter with a Catholic bishop, there is another moving scene in which we get to witness Valjean’s inner struggle as he decides to reclaim his identity and put the mentality of a slave behind him.  (Click the song link to hear Pedro perform the first three songs of “Les Mis” – Look Down, Valjean’s Soliloquy and The Bishop © 2012 Claude Michel Schonberg.)

These first few scenes set the stage for conflict throughout the movie.  On the one hand you have Valjean, who is stepping into his redeemed identity and living a life of grace and forgiveness (like Jesus).  On the other hand you have Javert, who represents ‘the law’ (like the Pharisees).  Javert is obsessed with tracking down Valjean to return him to prison for breaking parole—much like the Apostle Paul persecuted Christians prior to his conversion.

Throughout the movie, there are encounters between these two characters as their worlds collide in unpredictable ways.  Javert continues to believe (and sings) “a man such as you can never change”.  But even in the face of death, Valjean chooses to do what is right and won’t return to his ways of rebellion and slavery.  Valjean is a changed man.  He is walking out his identity in Christ. In the end (spoiler alert), Javert can’t live with himself and the inner turmoil caused by Valjean’s transformation, and chooses to take his own life—like Judas did.Les Miserables 2

I’ve seen “Les Mis” twice in the theater, bought the video this week and have listened to the soundtrack countless times in the last two months.  Needless to say, I love it!  I’m sure not everyone will agree with my enthusiasm for this movie.  However, with its powerful story, amazing music and compelling lyrics, I think “Les Mis” is a must-see for every Christian—and perfect for Holy Week reflection.  Coincidentally, it ends with the hope of tomorrow—just like we have in Christ.

What’s your favorite spiritual or Holy Week movie and why?

  • WELCOME to my site!

    I'm an author, writer, speaker, mentor & mom. I've struggled to find my voice all my life as I lived in the shadows of a mother with mental illness. Thankfully that was not the legacy that she handed down to me. It took a lot of recovery and deep healing work to rise above it.

    I am thankful to God for Making Me Bold in the process. Now I use my writing and speaking voice to help others on their journey to turn healing into hope.

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