Do you know the legend of the Cherokee Indian youth's rite of Passage? His father takes him into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone. He is required to sit on a stump the whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it. He cannot cry out for help to anyone. Once he survives the night, he is a MAN. He cannot tell the other boys of this experience, because each lad must come into manhood on his own. The boy is naturally terrified. He can hear all kinds of noises. Wild beasts must surely be all around him. Maybe even some human might do him harm. The wind blew the grass and earth, and shook his stump, but he sat stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be the only way he could become a man! Finally, after a horrific night the sun appeared and he removed his blindfold. It was then that he discovered his father sitting on the stump next to him. He had been at watch the entire night, protecting his son from harm. We, too, are never alone. Even when we don't know it, God is watching over us, sitting on the stump beside us. When trouble comes, all we have to do is reach out to Him.







Let's be more aware of all the choices, situations, twists and turns that brought us to this place right here and now. They May Be Miracles.



Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Stations of the Cross

Since this is Holy Week I am reminded of the Stations of the Cross presentation that we did with Youth Group for several years in a row.  The church usually provides a reflection on the Stations of the Cross every Friday during Lent, but my Youth Group would prepare a special presentation in addition.  For those who are not familiar with the Stations of the Cross, they are a reflection and meditation on the Passion of Christ - His journey from being condemned, to being layed in the tomb (and some versions include the Ressurrection)...these reflections are broken into 14 (sometimes 15) stations.  You can go here:  http://www.usccb.org/nab/stations.htm to look at one version of the stations if you have not heard of or experienced them before and are curious.

In any case my Youth Group used to perform an amazing, spirit-filled, awesome meditation and reflection on the stations.  We used a huge canvas (2 king sized sheets that a friend sewed together for us) and behind it we shined lights on students who acted out the stations...to the audience they were shadows of the characters.  It took lots of practice and time to get everyone situated and working in time with the narrator. 

The first year we presented these stations we had a little miracle that left a lasting impression on many people.  The students were presenting the Tenth Station, Jesus Is Crucified.  In our version we read from scripture about his hands and feet being nailed to the cross, then the students had a mallet and an actual cross behind the canvas and would hit the mallet on something (I forget what we used) to make a huge sound that sounded like a large metal nail.  Each time the mallet would hit, the actor playing Jesus would flinch so that the audience could see him laying on the cross in the shadow.  The second night we performed is when our "little miracle" happened.  Each time the mallet would come down and hit the cross,  a church bell would "dong."  NOT planned...just happened to be time for the church bells to "dong."  The dong was in complete unison with the mallet.  Shivers ran up and down everyone's spine.  At the end and for weeks later people would come to me and express their amazement at the church bells "donging" in time to Jesus's crucifixion.  It somehow made the experience even more real...it made us all feel like Jesus was making himself known and present to us. 

When has Jesus made himself "known and present" to you?  Yes, this can happen on a daily basis in reading scripture and in seeing him in others.  But when has he made sure that you absolutely knew without a doubt that he was standing there with you?

Allelulia!!  He has risen and we celebrate this Sunday!!  He is living and present among us all the time!!

6 comments:

Robin said...

Wow that is so Kool about the bells..I think everything happens for a reason, that must have sent chills up everyone's spines..it did for me when I read it..!

LibbyLibbyLibbyLibbyLibby said...

oh goodness I would of loved to of experienced that...the bells ... wonderful!

There have been times I needed, desperately, a tangible 'hug' from God... and have without a doubt been given that hug per request of a deep prayer in my heart along with huge admittedly some pleading involved... ...those times have been amazing for me... jaw dropping.

May Be Miracles said...

Robin,
I know, chills for sure, right?! Love that stuff! You're right, everything has a time and a reason! Take care, Dustine

May Be Miracles said...

LibbyLibbyLibbyLibbyLibby,

It truely was an amazing experience! So glad when I get to be blessed with such cool things!

Awesome to hear of your tangible "hugs" from God. He is so Good all the time and is sure to give us just what we need! We know this, and YES, our jaws still drop in amazement, right?!! Take care, Dustine

Lloyd said...

I want to personally thank you for such an uplifting and well written message. May our Lord continue to shine through you and your blog. God bless, Lloyd

May Be Miracles said...

Lloyd,
Thank you for your prayer of blessing! I pray that God blesses you and yours too! I will look forward to stopping by your blog on Monday when I play catch up after this weekend!!
Have a happy and blessed Easter!!
Dustine