Saturday, April 15, 2017

Shhh... Please Don't Tell Me That I Wasn't Sharing His Load

I've read of people who believe they are Jesus Christ. I was never one of that mindset, but I will tell you that I once believed that I helped Jesus Christ.

I blame the way we Colombians do things. A lot of things that we do to the moon and back, and Easter -- well, the way we did Easter growing up I can't help but say to Americans, you haven't done Easter until you've dragged a broom across your back in the kitchen and told yourself you were helping our Lord carry the world's sins with Him. 

Easter Sunday in America is baskets, jelly beans, foil wrapped eggs, and egg hunts. It's also a day of chomp-the-ears-off-the-chocolate-bunny while you listen to the story of spiritual rebirth. But Easter for me, from age three and up, sure--it was about black jelly beans, dyed eggs, and 12-inch tall bunnies made of chocolate. But there was something else you don't know about Easter and me.
Ever since I first turned the pages to my picture bible and saw Jesus dragging the wooden cross made heavy with the weight of the world's sins, I was so overcome with the visual of what the world had put upon beautiful Jesus, that I had to be part of his rescue team. On Easter Sunday morning, I'd burst through the kitchen door and run to open the kitchen closet.

It was Easter Sunday! Yeah, yeah, I know there were Easter baskets to get to but where was our broom?? I needed to get to our broom!
Oh, my family taught me to respect Good Friday up right. We kept that day solemn, quiet, in observance from noon until three o'clock, with no TV, no radio. Good Friday is not a sad time, but a time of hushed anticipation for those like the kind of little girl that I was: in love with the heart ache of penance and humility. Walking the Stations of the Cross, kneeling before each Passion of Christ one by one, reading and hearing of Jesus’ arduous climb to His final stop on Mount Calvary — words here cannot do justice to the mystical experience that was for me.

When Easter morning finally came, I would wrap myself in a flat sheet and tie an oversize belt around my waist. I would put on my older sisters’ long brunette wigs and drag my feet, and then hunched back, across the kitchen floor, bearing the broom on my bent spine.

No one stopped me. My family would come into the kitchen and get their cereal bowls and juice glasses, moving around my slouched figure. 

My reenactments were no parody. My scene was complete with wiping the sweat off my brow, and stopping to catch my breath and ease my burden. This was work, but I could not have felt more blessed that to be in the coveted role of Jesus.

“All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts...,” so Shakespeare tells us. But I would go on to say, “And one man in his time plays many parts, but none felt more honored than a child imagining taking on — just for a martyred few seconds across a small kitchen floor — Jesus’ pain.”

Yes, Americans do have Easter Sunday baskets filled with candy and shredded plastic green grass. But for me, a little girl able to pretend on one soul stirring day a year, that she was carrying even an ounce of back breaking weight in her beloved Jesus’ name, well, really... bitten off chocolate bunny ears and foil wrapped eggs paled in comparison.
Hold on, Jesus, hold on, I'm coming as soon as I find where my Abuelita put the broom away last night, because I love you.
* * * 

1 comment:


Related Posts with Thumbnails