4 Weeks Past the Cross (On Being Delivered)
BY: TCLeach at http://throughanewlens.blogspot.com/
Those of you who are following this blog take a peek each week at what it looks like and feels like to walk past the cross for me. This week, things are a little different. This week, The Father’s commanded observance of the Passover Feast, along with The Week of Unleavened Bread, is paramount to anything about this girl’s life. The Passover (Pesach in the original language of Scriptures, Hebrew) is the act that Our God attributes to His Name in the very first commandment!
- “I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” (Exodus 20 KJV)
- In the translations that are closer to the actual Hebrew writings, it looks like this: “I am יהוה your Elohim, who brought you out of the land of Mitsrayim, out of the house of slavery. You have no other mighty ones against My face.” (Exodus 20 ISR98)
And so, the only thing I will say about myself this week is that I have repented. Never again will I take His mighty Holy Day and tape a picture of Jesus (Yeshua) over it. The Passover always was, and always will be, about The Father showing Himself as the One True God by delivering His people from Egypt!
~Forgive me, Father, for ever making it about something other than you. I believe that obedience to You saved Your own, and not blood from a lamb. You alone are my Redeemer!~
This week, instead of a peek inside my life, I offer you a peek into my imagination. I was captivated this weekend by thinking about what it may have been like to be a young girl on that original Pass Over night. How glorious, how frightening, how awesome to see the Hand of the God of her fathers move through her life it must have been! Can you imagine?…?…
Terzah tucked her bony elbows and knees under her Grandmother’s shawl and pressed against the old woman’s chest until the soothing sounds of heart-beat masked the hushed whispers of the other adults in the room. At nine, Terzah wasn’t privy to the particulars of the strange events surrounding her life at that time, but she knew from overhearing clips of her parents’ conversations that the God her people prayed to had promised through Moses that He was about to free His people. So far, all the girl had witnessed didn’t offer her heart much hope. Bloody water, frogs and lice, darkness…these were just a few of the things she’d seen recently. It seemed to her that the only thing she could count on those days was the steady rhythm of that heartbeat. She couldn’t imagine how that God would ever accomplish His plan at the rate things were going!
As Terzah snuggled closer to the heartbeat, her Grandmother began to pray and praise to the invisible God. There was something different in the air of that tiny home that night, something almost tangible. Terzah imagined she could see the prayers take on shape and color. She was imagining the most beautiful colors dancing like prism’s when her mother called her to help with dinner. She had to fight to not giggle as the dinner commenced. Never had they taken a meal in such a manner! All stood with their sandals strapped on, and the men in the room held staffs. Why, they hadn’t even allowed the bread to rise! It was flat and tasteless, eaten only with bitter herbs and fresh roasted lamb. The urge to giggle rose again, but was immediately stifled as her father’s deep voice filled the hushed chamber with his prayer. When the prayer was finished, Terzah listened as he explained that God commanded that they eat that meal ready to leave in haste. As her brothers questioned her father, Terzah concentrated on all the words intently. As she listened, any further urges to giggle disappeared. Something big was about to happen, she just knew it!
The blood above their door post fascinated Terzah. The prayers being said that night were above her understanding, and she certainly couldn’t fathom how smears of blood would keep anyone out! When she was able to get her mother’s attention and ask about it, she was told it was not for them to understand or question, but only to obey. Obedience she understood. No one seemed to notice that bedtime had come and gone, so the drowsy girl curled up on her Grandmother’s lap once again and pulled the shawl tighter around the two of them. Grandmother’s gnarled fingers made gentle circles on Terzah’s back in rhythm to a song the old woman was humming. Terzah dozed, tucked in her safe haven, only to be pulled out of her slumber every so often by the sounds of the adults standing vigil, praying and singing songs of praise. Her dreams of skipping freely across the lands were interrupted deep into the night by the sounds of mournful wails coming from outside. At the same time, the rush of footsteps down the alley and men shouting broke the grip of her slumber. Terzah was frightened out of her wits, and confused when she only saw joy radiating from the faces all around her. She watched in fascination as all the men in the room put their faces on the floor in prayer, and the women lifted their hand in praise. Unable to reconcile the wails she had heard with the joyful sounds coming from within her home, Terzah allowed slumber to take her captive once again.
Whether minutes had passed or hours, Terzah couldn’t say. She wasn’t even fully awake when her father lifted her high and spun her in the air, laughing. He hadn’t done that since she was little! Although light hadn’t even overtaken the dark sky yet, there was a flutter of activity in her home. Her mother began issuing instructions for Terzah to help gather their few possessions. “We’re free!” her brother cried as he went about helping her father strap parcels onto their animal’s backs. Terzah turned wide eyes to her Grandmother, who at that moment seemed as young as Terzah herself, the way her face was lit with joy. “Terzah” Grandmother said, “He has done it! The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob has liberated us! We are freed to go and serve Him, young one!” For emphasis, Grandmother took Terzah’s face lovingly into her aged hands, “You must never forget! Promise me!” Terzah gazed upon her favorite person in the world, whose eyes were ablaze with seriousness. “I won’t forget, Grandmother, I promise!” Terzah knew in her spirit that she was no longer just a child. She was a child loved by the One Who Is and Who Will Be. She was a daughter of God!
Comfortable and content in her new role, she straightened her shoulders and went about being helpful. It wasn’t long before she was walking along with her people, right through the biggest gates she had ever seen in her life! Her legs didn’t hurt and her feet were steady, even though she spent the day carrying various little ones who needed a snooze, even in the midst of all the joyful shouting and prayers. As night fell, she was still full of energy and excitement. A hush fell across the crowd as news spread from the back of the group that Pharaoh’s chariots were approaching. With nothing but the Sea in front of them, many began accusing Moses of leading the people out for slaughter. But not Terzah! If her Grandmother had assured her they’d been liberated, then liberated she believed they were! For the first time in her nine years, Terzah knelt on skinned, bony knees and prayed to The One who set them free. At first she tried to use words like she’d overheard her father and brothers using, but a wave of something she’d never felt before rushed through her, and she resorted to her own vocabulary to express her awe and wonder of the God who’d brought them this far. After her prayer, she found herself without fear. She stood through the night and watched as little by little, a path formed through the center of the water in front of them. As the sun rose, she followed as Moses led the Children of Israel onto the path, and safely to dry ground on the other side.
Terzah turned to look back at the waters they had just walked through. As she stood transfixed, her Grandmother joined her on the shore and took her tiny hand. They watched together as the path closed back up, even while hundreds of Pharaoh’s chariots were crossing the same way they just had. Terzah watched her Grandmother’s face as her old hands raised in the air in praise. The young girl followed suit, knowing she had just been delivered twice in as many days by this God who was suddenly more real to her than her favorite sweet cakes. Even if she couldn’t see Him, she knew she could see Him moving! As they rejoined the group with a skip in their step, Terzah turned to the old woman, who no longer seemed to be old, and said, “Grandmother, I will never forget this day! And I will teach my children to teach their children to teach their children about the God of our Fathers!” With the expression of love on her face that is exclusive to Grandmothers, the old woman hugged Terzah and said, “I know you won’t child, I know you won’t!”
I know that my characters were fiction, but it warms my heart to know that some of us are related to a little girl that experienced that deliverance! Some of us nibbled bitter herbs, ate unleavened bread with roasted meat, and drank the sweet fruit of the vine this year because one little girl kept a promise to teach her kids to teach their kids to teach their kids about HaShem, who brought His people up out of Egypt!
“See” you next week, friends! Until then, you will be in my prayers. Have a most blessed Holy Week!