I am not sure why, but we got on the conversation of the movie, "The Passion of Christ." Catholic or not, believer or not, it is a powerful movie. How do I know, since I have never seen the movie? I have been a Catholic for eleven years, come this Easter. I am fully aware of what our Lord has done for each of us, on the cross. That story was told before Mel Gibson got his hands on the movie rights. However, one of my closest gal pals had it out for me while we were talking. She insisted that I have to watch the movie. HAVE TO.
Why? Do I also have to hold a smokers lung to know the dangers of smoking? Drink alcohol until I get drunk and then get ill from that so that I know that dangers of excess? Smoke a whole cartoon of cigarettes until I vomit, just to learn some lesson from that? Go to a third world country, or even around the corner and see a starving person to feel that pain? Go to an animal shelter, circus, or a zoo to see the pain and suffering of animals at the hands of human choice?
Luckily, this person is in my life. I have learned so much from her. However, she does not realize that while sharing our faith, even amongst ourselves, is important, it is the life we lead that shares. Not telling someone else how to live theirs'. Our actions will speak louder than words, and our words will be silenced by our actions.
I explained that I know of the suffering that our Lord experiences each and every time I make a choice that is not out of love and how the Stations of the Cross is hard for me. It is a graphic story, and one that while important, not one that I can handle emotionally in my spiritual journey, at this time. But she insisted. She wouldn't let up. She asked again, "Why?" I couldn't find the words. (Shocker. I know. Say nothing.) I explained that it was "jarring." It was more than I could handle. Luckily, I diverted the conversation to other things, and we were talking long enough to come full circle.
The conversation comes to demons, and possession, and the movie with the split pea soup. (Can't think of the name, but you all know what I am talking about.) And while we are at it, these conversations are enough to make my skin crawl. She then says, "Talk about jarring. I can't watch that sort of movie." Hmm. Interesting. While she believes in this concept, she just can't handle it.
This Lenten season, my prayer is to grow deeper in my young faith with my Lord. To love as He does, do accept as He does, and to share His life as He did. His actions will live much longer than His words. I don't need to see it on a screen. I see it everyday when I see suffering. I see it everyday when I see my children's faces. I see it in a sunset. I see it in a violent, devastating natural disaster. I know what his eternal love looks like.