As Jesus was leaving the temple that day, one of his disciples said, ?Teacher, look at these magnificent buildings! Look at the impressive stones in the walls.? Jesus replied, ?Yes, look at these great buildings. But they will be completely demolished. Not one stone will be left on top of another!? (Mark 13: 1-2)
Let?s talk about walls.
Life is done within walls. Walls of our homes, our jobs, our schools. And those walls are generally viewed as protective.
But then there?s the Berlin Wall, which was built to confine?or trap?the residents of the communist-occupied nation of East Germany.
According to the John F. Kennedy presidential library and museum website, ?In the early morning hours of Aug. 13, 1961, the people of East Berlin were awakened by the rumbling of heavy machinery barreling down their streets toward the line that divided the eastern and western parts of the city.
?Groggy citizens looked on as work details began digging holes and jackhammering sidewalks, clearing the way for the barbed wire that would eventually be strung across the dividing line. Armed troops manned the crossing points between the two sides and, by morning, a ring of Soviet troops surrounded the city. Overnight, the freedom to pass between the two sections of Berlin ended.?
Let me repeat that last statement: Overnight, the freedom to pass between the two sections of Berlin ended.
That loss of freedom led to the deaths of more than 260 people trying to flee to West Germany.
Walls. Sometimes protection, sometimes a barrier, but never freedom.
This weekend, I attended Women?s Encounter, an event that will forever be a pivotal moment of my life.
As I have mentioned before, I love Jesus. My faith is important to me. And I went into the weekend with high expectations.
I expected to be healed…but only of a hurt that happened in recent months. But God did something that went far beyond my hopes for what my faith could be.
And now, I am free.
Instead of addressing only my most recent hurt?and my own unwillingness to forgive?God took me back 15 years. He took me back to a time before the death of my brother and He showed me how high my walls really were.
Before this weekend, God had slowly been chipping away at my hardness, but I still kept myself trapped, all in the name of protecting myself.
It?s baffled me?ever since college probably?how joy always seemed elusive. I always believed that was because of one trial or another. First, it was health issues with our daughter. Next, it was miscarriages, overwhelming exhaustion, a messy house or a spirited child. But it was never my choice.
Or so I thought. Until I started seeing my walls for what they were?confining, chaffing and destroying.
While I would never describe myself as a passionate animal lover, I hate zoos. I can?t stand to see those animals confined, never to have a taste of true freedom. It?s sad and depressing.
And by my own choice, that?s exactly what I had done to myself over the years. I was like those disciples saying, ?Hey Jesus, look at my beautiful walls!?
But no more.
This weekend I chose to completely embrace the freedom Jesus gives through his defeat of the grave, and no more will I be held captive.
For more information on men?s or women?s encounter, visit encounterthecross.com or contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.