“I love the Lord, for He HEARD my voice; He heard my cry for mercy…
Be at rest once more, O my soul, for the Lord has been GOOD to you.
For You, O Lord, have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before the Lord in the land of the living…
How can I repay the Lord for all His goodness to me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord.”
– Psalm 116:1, 7-8, 12-13
We celebrated our Tobias’ 1st birthday last Sunday. Palm Sunday. I read and reread over Psalm 116 – verses that had helped solidify our choice for Toby’s name.
Tobias (God is good)
Samuel (God has heard)
I’m thankful for Toby’s life…and the way God graciously reminds us of His goodness because of it each day.
I felt David’s words…
How can I repay the Lord for all His goodness to me?
Some versions of verse 13 are translated, “I will TAKE the cup of salvation…”
God gave. What can I give back?
You see, God isn’t just good because He gave me another son. He’s good because He gave up His ONLY Son.
Jesus’ life in place of mine. My depravity on his sinless shoulders. A beautifully merciful and gracious free gift.
Meant to be TAKEN.
And I’ve already taken it…as a little girl all those years ago. But I felt Him calling me to remember. To continue to drink. To daily give my rescued life back. Modeling for my boys to do the same.
Our Isaiah’s name means “God is my salvation”. The Jesus Storybook Bible says that the prophet Isaiah’s name means “God to the rescue”.
“…and my people shall be satisfied with My goodness.”
– Jeremiah 31:14b
God, my satisfaction. God, my good. God, my salvation. God, my rescue.
How can I repay the Lord for His goodness to me?
I can’t repay Him.
But I can continue to drink of it. Continue to remember it. And strive my hardest to impress it upon my little boys.
And because of that, this Easter was probably the most special one that I can remember. Seeing God’s sacrifice and goodness and rescue through Isaiah’s eyes overwhelmed me and reminded me of all this past week means for us.
On Thursday we remembered Passover. Those Israelites rescued because of an innocent lamb’s blood. So we read. And we remembered.
We read about Jesus – the Son of God, the One who spoke the world into existence, the promised Messiah, the King of kings – getting down onto His knees and washing His friends’ feet…because He loved them.
And Isaiah wanted to wash his Daddy’s feet…
And then Daddy washed his…
And I cried watching my 4 year old ask to wash his brother’s…
And it was quiet. No giggling or chatting or arguing. I know Isaiah didn’t completely understand what he was doing. But some times a 4 year old can have a better understanding than an adult of the One who did it first. And he simply wanted to do the same.
We read and talked about Jesus’ last meal with his disciples. How they celebrated Passover. How their hearts must have ached when Jesus told them He was going away.
How He took the bread and broke it. How He gave up his life for us.
How He took the cup and promised to shed His blood. The blood of a spotless Lamb. The remission for our sins. Once and for all.
So we took the cup and we drank.
“I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord.”
We call the next day “Good Friday”. We understand now why it was good. But I’m sure it didn’t feel good then. And we remembered.
On Friday morning Adam took Isaiah down to walk on the railroad tracks (one of his favorite things) and collect rocks (also one of his favorite things). But this time they took his Easter basket.
One by one he picked up stones to put in his basket.
Adam asked him to carry it on his own. But it was too heavy for him.
So his Daddy carried them for him.
And showed him the size of the nails. And the weight of the cross. And we remembered.
He brought home his findings and we read Ezekiel 36:26.
Sin. The reason for our stony hearts. The cause for our enmity with God. The load that was too heavy for us to carry. The need for our rescue. Our need for Jesus.
Isaiah named sins to write on the rocks. His sins. Not ones that he knew other people committed or hypothetical situations or something we told him to say. He took ownership for them. Evidence of his need for a Savior. For a spotless Lamb’s blood. For Jesus.
There’s something special about watching Isaiah write that name.
And then we covered his basket of stones with a red cloth. And thanked Jesus that, because of His blood, we can have new hearts.
We read about that Good Friday so long ago.
The day the Light of the World died…because of my sin. And we remembered.
On Saturday, we talked about Jesus’ burial. How they followed Jewish custom and put oils and spices on Jesus’ body. And we remembered.
And how they put him in a borrowed tomb.
How even though the tomb was guarded and shut up tight…
…it couldn’t keep Jesus inside!
On Sunday the tomb was empty! We tasted the sweet victory of life over death. And we remembered.
I think I awoke on Easter morning this year with greater anticipation than Christmas. I just couldn’t wait to celebrate Jesus’ risen life with Isaiah.
And what that empty tomb means for us.
We read Romans 6:23…
…and thanked God for the gift of eternal life when all we deserved was death.
Forgiveness. Peace. Unmerited Favor. Rescue. Adoption into God’s family. Citizenship in Heaven.
And then Isaiah took the blanket off of his basket.
The stony sins were gone. And gifts were in their place. A gift that brings life. And gifts that bring our little boy joy.
A little basket that doesn’t come anywhere CLOSE to the gift that we’ve been offered. But cat at least serve as a reminder, for a 4 year old boy, of God’s gracious goodness.
Oh, how my heart needs to be daily reminded of how I’ve been rescued and what a gift I’ve been given…all because of Easter.
“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you walked…
being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loves us,
even when we were dead in our trespasses,
made us ALIVE with Christ…”
– Ephesians 2:1, 4-5
Thank you, Jesus!
* Resources that helped us develop our Easter week: