Have you ever tried to get a dozen preschoolers to sit still and listen? This is one of the tasks before me each Sunday in FBC’s preschool class, and it has given me a deep respect for teachers who manage to do it for hours on end each day. When it comes to our Bible lesson each week, I always count on a couple of outliers. You know them—the little boy who just CAN’T stay seated or the little girl who has a VERY important story to share.
But a funny thing happened last Sunday. Instead of continuing through our study of Numbers, we instead focused on Jesus during His last week leading up to the cross. While I told them about Palm Sunday, I had the normal number of fidgeters in the crowd. As we got closer to the cross, though, a hush fell over all of them. As I explained Jesus being arrested, beaten, spit on and ultimately crucified, I had everyone’s full attention.
Because it was so outside of the norm, the experience churned in my mind the following days. Even for three- and four-year-old children, the story of the cross is powerful. It is unfathomable in human minds why a sinless Christ would willingly suffer and die for the sins of those who were His enemies.
On Sunday, Chris told us that the mood of the Good Friday service would be somber. If you wonder why, take some time to read through the account of Jesus’s final days before crucifixion. If we were arrested unjustly, we would protest. If we were spit on and beaten, we would fight back (or, as one of the preschoolers said, “I would knock his head off if someone hit me!”). If we had the power to free ourselves from a death sentence, we would without a second thought. When I think about how differently Christ acted than I would, I am in awe, especially when I think of the reason: because He loves me.
I can’t wait to celebrate Christ’s resurrection on Sunday. But for me to celebrate properly, I first need to feel the weight of Christ’s suffering for me. This weekend, I am thankful for the opportunity to do both with our FBC family.