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It’s the Journey…not the Resurrection (and why we need to die in order to really live)

sally blog 4.22

Don’t fall off your seat or anything, but on Sunday…I went to church.

But before that happened, Saturday, I texted my motorcycle friend to see if he was available the next day (Sunday…Easter) to help me take my bike out of winter mode. He said yes, but only if I came to church to see him sing in the choir and play drums.

It had been awhile since I found myself sitting/standing and trying to pay attention in church.

Since I dated a Pastor’s son, to be exact (which has actually happened at three different times in my life, but that’s a different story altogether).

But on Sunday, I found myself among the sea of other Easter goers at Journey Church, in Bozeman, MT.

Journey is what some might call a “mega-church.” Big, beautiful building (that also hosts events such as Ted Talks Bozeman, etc), lots of technology on the “stage,” no stained glass windows, no altar. Just a bunch of good looking kids playing rock renditions of hymns, with a pastor who says things like “dude” and “God died for our sins…I mean, right?!” and asks us to take out our cell phones to text this anonymous number the sins we’d like to leave at the door (only to show them all on the screen…anonymously…later in the sermon).

This thing was top notch. A tight production, reminiscent of a weekly play or a ballet. Just as graceful.

At first I was skeptical. Not just of Church itself (which I’m actually not skeptical of at all since me and church go waaaaaaaaay back), but of spending one of my only days off at church. But once I got that out of my head, I thought four things to myself:

1) What the hell (oops…sorry God) else am I going to do today?

2) I wonder what church is like here/now?

3) My friend asked me to go and I’d like to support him

4) Maybe I’ll gain some inspiration for the Wildheart Revolution

So I went. With an open mind. Even though at times it was hard to bring myself back to a heart place when I found myself judgemental of aspects of this mega-church.

But I decided to take whatever was said, and apply it directly to my life. Which was actually easy because the sermon was exactly what I had already been rolling around in my head all week.

Which is…what is Easter really about? What does it mean to “die” and be “resurrected” and how can we all apply this to our lives.

In the sermon, the pastor told us about how when Jesus died, he left everything he previously was on that cross. That in order for a resurrection to happen, that a death of the old needed to precede it. And only by dying to the old, are we able to be born into what we’re meant to be. (Click to tweet that!)

THAT is resurrection.

And this got me thinking. About everything. About all the similar “spiritual” concepts that are just like this one:

“In order for one door to open, another one needs to close.”

“If you love something, set it free…”

“Leave everything you got on that stage tonight” (ok this was a mantra from my old band, but you get the point)

And there, in Journey Church, it all clicked.

That this was what Easter was all about. This was the divine message wanting to come through.

That we get to make a decision to leave the old, the things that aren’t working for us behind (like really really behind…like on that cross, kinda behind) in order to have the life we’re truly meant to live.

And this got me thinking of my own life. Of all the things I’ve been keeping alive that have been preventing my own resurrection. My own new birth. My own best life. And the list was long. Some of the gems were:

Doubt in myself/my abilities/Wildheart

Looking to other things/people for my happiness

Lack of self-love

Giving into my old habits and patterns that don’t serve me

Relationships that are already technically gone but I’ve been hanging on to

A messed up relationship with my body

Plus many many more.

And on that pew, tears welled up in my eyes. Not only at the sadness of realizing how many things I was hanging onto that were actually hurting me, but at the possibility of my own resurrection. Salvation. Of a true, new birth. Of actually BEING that person I know I truly am, deep down. And that all I need to do to be saved…is die. To myself. To my old way of being.

So that the seeds that had been planted long ago can actually sprout.

And I wondered, how many of us need to let our old selves “die” before we can truly live the lives we want to live. How many things we need to stop keeping alive, to truly move forward. My guess is…A LOT. And ALL OF US.

So I pose this as a challenge. For you (and me…I’m doing it too) to look at your life…really look at it. And see the things you’re keeping alive that are getting in the way of truly living. And asking yourself, truthfully, “what do I need to leave at the cross, what in my life needs to die, in order for me to be who I’m truly meant to be?”

Perhaps you will also find yourself welling up on your own pew. And if so, I’d love to hear about it.

If this resonates with you, please feel free to leave a comment below with what you’ve discovered.

See you in church,

Sally Hope

P.s. Do you like this article? Were you nodding along? If so…make sure you’re on my list to find out when new things happen around here. Just put your name in the box below and we’ll get to rockin out at the mega-church together.


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4 Responses to It’s the Journey…not the Resurrection (and why we need to die in order to really live)

  1. Sally I LOVED this! You have such wonderful insight. Don’t you just love those moments of epiphany :) Thank you for sharing!

  2. Kortney K says:

    Love this post Sally! You’re a true wildheart because it takes courage and guts to admit and face those things to leave on that cross. At least that’s been my experience! Thanks so much for being a great influence. This has been one of the best reads from you I’ve received. Thanks again and “see you in church”! :)

  3. Cameron says:

    Damn, this really is kind of head-explode-y stuff to think about (in the best way), and I love the way you write about it. Reminds me of a quote I read once and loved: “Life is a series of little deaths out of which life always returns.” –Charles Feidelson, Jr. Cheers to letting go and letting new life rush in!

  4. Deborah says:

    Love this!! I have had such a love-hate relationship with the institution of church … daughter of a baptist missionary … that is me … I had a similar experience Easter … Was not my #1 choice of ways to spend a morning but had promised a friend and then dinner afterwards with her family …
    Biggest relationship I am letting go of in what feels like fits and starts is the one I have with fear … “resurrecting” into the deepest relationship with Love … realizing it looks how it looks, this process, and sounds how it sounds …and it[the process] doesn’t always look, sound or feel pretty … in fact very often doesn’t and !!! WOW !!! SO . WORTH . THE . JOURNEY !!!

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