Lectionary: Maundy Thursday

by Terrance “Lil Bear” Plummer

Exodus 12:1-14

LAST INSTRUCTIONS

This is the instructional video that God gave to Moses and Aaron to give to those He calls His own (the congregation of Israel). These are the things that needed to be done to gain their freedom. As with Israel, God is often giving us instructions for our lives, things to be done, to set us free from the thing or persons that have us enslaved. When God hears our cry, we must be ready to move out to the places God wants to take us.

This is the dilemma that I’ve seen among a lot of us on the inside of these prison walls, and even with those who aren’t in prison. We can’t believe that God can hear us from where we are. We’re too enslaved to our past, current situation, and circumstances. Focusing on the past and our failures can neutralize our desire to be set free from whatever is holding us.

The truth is, if we have put our hope in Jesus, and have set our love on him, He hears our cry. There is no barrier between God and our voice or our prayers (Psalm 116:1-2). It is in knowing that God hear us, that causes our love to grow toward God, having someone we can go to all the time, when it seems no one else is listening, a sure place of understanding, to know that we’re heard, and our plight of freedom matters, from whatever it is that holds us captive.

BE READY

How do we ready ourselves for the new beginning and the journey into our freedom?
Step one is believing that God is God, that He hear us, is concerned about our lives, and cares about our freedom. This takes faith, especially when you’ve been told by God to do something you’ve never done before. For Israel some of the things God had asked them to do (the putting of the blood on the door post, eating the roasted lamb with unleavened bread and bitter herbs, and shoes on your feet and ready to go etc.) may have seemed strange. It had been a very long time since they had heard from God. We sometimes feel that it’s been a long time for us also. We who believe know that God has spoken to us by way of His Son Jesus Christ (Hebrew 1:2). I believe God is speaking to you now about something, even as you read this.

Step two involves our instructions—the Word—we need to hear to be set free. This is when faith comes into play to determine how much we believe God and how bad we really want to be set free, so we can start our new beginning away from that which holds us captive. If we can learn to have confidence in the sacrifice, and the blood of Jesus, (our Passover), we can be ready to move out into the freedom God has prepared for us, knowing God will not cause harm to us, that He only wants to see us set free. The safe passage to freedom will always be in God seeing the blood (Exodus 12:11-13). It’s in our readiness to move out on The Word of God alone: “Just because You said it Lord, is good enough for me. I’ll follow the instructions You have given, I want to be set free from this thing. I’m ready to follow.”

THINGS TO REMEMBER

A reminder of what God has done. How do we transition from one place to another?
The first thing that we should know is that God is always moving His people forward. We don’t have to stand still before anything that has us enslaved. However, we do need to remember what God has set us free from in the past This sometimes may be very hard to do because of the pain of that thing or person we were enslaved to has caused us.

I often think about the day when my physical freedom will come, the people God uses for His glory to help sustain me while in my Egypt experience, those God used to give me hope, those God used to bring change into my life, those God used to let me know He had not forgotten about me.

We on the inside have had some very bad things happen in our pasts that we would just rather forget. These experiences pull us down and push some of us into anxiety, despair, and deep depression. These are not good places for us to be nor are these the things God calls us to remember.

However, God has called us to remember His acts of love, kindness, goodness, and the freedom that He has made for us. “This I never want you to forget.” (Exodus 12:14). Even God chooses the things He will or will not remember. God made the choice to remember our sins no more (Hebrews 8:12-13, and 10:16-17) even though we remind God about our sins. Why do we do that? The stuff we are suppose to forget we remember and the things we are suppose to remember we often forget. It is God who gives us seasons and tells us to set up memorials to remember the time of our deliverance from that which held us captive. Why do we need these reminders and memorials? We never want to forget who it is that has set us free: the One who has been our way maker, who is there for us when we get to the rough waters, then leads us across dry land, He who heal us from the snake bites of this life in the middle of our own wilderness experience, He who calms the sea and get us to the other side safely, and through it all, never stops being the captain of our souls. This is why we need to remember and build memorials for all the times in our lives when God has set us free from something that we were enslaved to.

We should never want to take our eyes off Him (Psalm 112:7) and Hebrew 12:2a) just as God never take His eyes off us. Why would we want to forget the author of our salvation?

Let us think back on the victories already won, for the battles we’re in, and the ones we may face, all the time keeping our eyes on the one and only Passover Lamb worth remembering, “JESUS OUR CHRIST”

Much love from God and me to all that read this. Happy Passover…………. JESUS IS LORD!

Terrance Lil Bear Plummer
Greensville Correctional Center
Jarrett, Virginia

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