April 6, 2015
Nearly every Christmas we read The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. It’s a book about the Herdmans, a group of delinquent siblings who take over the leading roles of the local church’s Christmas program despite knowing nothing of the story. It’s hilarious and sweet, and for many months after she arrived, I kept thinking that our girl would fit right in with the Herdmans.
At the end of the book there’s a moment where the narrator looks at Imogene Herdman, playing the role of Mary, and as everyone else is singing Silent Night, Imogene is silently weeping. I cry every time I read that part–the beauty and simplicity of Christ’s love for us, overwhelming to a wild and unchecked heart.
We went to our church’s Good Friday service this weekend, and kept our older three kids with us. Our girl was next to me, and our voices were joined with hundreds of others, a sweet sound of sorrowful joy as we praised God for the sacrifice of his son, our sins washed away by his blood. In the middle of one of the songs I looked down at our girl, and she looked up at me, and she had tears streaming down her beautiful face. Alarmed, I leaned down to ask her what was wrong. She shook her head.
“I’m not sad. I’m so happy,” she whispered in my ear.
Is there anything else to say? Christ came to save sinners. He suffered so we might be comforted, and died so we might live. The saddest moment in history gives us our greatest joy. Apart from Christ, her heart and mine are both wild and unchecked, but his love reaches in and overwhelms us, and we respond with joyful tears.