Monday, March 24, 2008

Happy Easter

Happy Easter, my dear friends and loved ones. I wanted to share how important and significant this holiday is to me. However, I really struggled with this post. Why? Mostly my blog is so light-hearted and silly. It is filled with the craziness of our family's everyday life. My personal relationship with the Savior is so sacred to me, and I did not want this post to be put into the same light-hearted category as my others. After much thought, I did want to share some of my feelings on the Savior because my desire to be like Him is absolutely a part of who I am.

My favorite artist is Liz Lemon Swindle ( Her life-like paintings astonish me. I want to share some of my favorite works of hers.

Jesus - What a beautiful, pure image!
Why Weepest Thou - This is a portrait showing the love and concern Mary Magdalene had for the Savior. You can feel her anguish as she realizes His body is missing.

She Shall Bring Forth A Son - This painting is my favorite. I could stare at it all day. Mothers, think of the feelings you had as you met your child for the first time. Combine those feelings with the knowledge Mary had that she was holding the Savior of Mankind. I can't even comprehend what she must have felt. This painting is so tender.
The Holy Men - I love this one too! These are the wise men paying homage to the young king. By the look on His face, He doesn't seem to know who they are! I wanted to share what Liz Lemon Swindle said about this painting. I couldn't have said it better myself: How wonderful to consider that moment when three or four or twenty holy men knelt at the feet of the holiest man of all, though yet in the body of a toddler, and worshipped Him. (Matthew 2: 8-12)
When Did He Know - I just saw this painting for the first time tonight. The title really struck me. I suppose I have never thought of that before. When did he know? At what age did he gain an understanding of who he was?
Let The Children Come - The Savior loved children. We all know of the story of when He was teaching all day, and some of the people brought their children to Him just so they could see Him and He touch them. His disciples shooed them away so as not to bother Jesus. When He saw this He was very upset. He told them, "Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein." - Mark 10:14 & 15

Friends - I think it is impossible not to smile when looking at this painting. Jesus is talking to and listening to this beautiful child. Don't you think we wants to do the same with us?
Hold On Tight - What a perfect name for this painting. We have to "hold on tight" to the Savior and His teachings. If we "hold" onto Him, he will lead us back to The Father.
Worth Of A Soul - This one pierces my soul. I almost feel as though I should turn away and not look because it is so intimate. I have always felt humbled as I think of how great the worth of a soul is to the Savior and to our Father in Heaven. Let's think of our own children. Would we be willing to put a price tag on them? $100,000? $1,000,000? $1,000,000,000? Of course not. That's how Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father feel about us. That's how they feel about the scummiest, most vile human beings too. They are also children of God. We are not to judge anyone as to think they are "worthless." That one can certainly be hard.

Seeking The One - In this one, the look on the Savior's face is one of waiting. Waiting for us to come to Him.
Of course I could share more, but I think I'm running out of room. I love the Savior, Jesus Christ for so many reasons. His ability to love everyone - not just the people who were kind to Him; He showed love to His enemies as well. Think of the words He spoke to the Father as he was being killed: "Father, forgive them. For they know not what they do."
I love Him for being willing to show us the way. For example, we've been commanded to enter the waters of baptism. "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." (John 3:5) But the Savior was perfect! He had no need to be baptized! He was willing to do so because the Lord commanded it to be done by all men.
I love Him mostly for His atoning sacrifice. Have you ever taken the time to ponder that? His atonement on my behalf, let alone on behalf of all people ever to have been born is almost incomprehensible to me. It is almost impossible for me to grasp what He did. I am eternally grateful for His sacrifice for me.