Do you think we each have a nursery rhyme character who could be our long, lost, identical twin?
Personally, I find Humpty Dumpty highly relatable and relevant to my story.
I haven’t asked my mom yet, but I wonder if Humpty and I were accidentally separated at birth.
On the outside Humpty looks like a pretty dapper egg.
I grew up in suburbia, finished high school, college and grad school. I got married, had a bunch of kids, work a job and even involve myself with a pretty cool church.
But that white, polished exterior is as thin and brittle as glass.
My heart, like yours, is so disordered and fragile.
And Humpty spends so much energy climbing up on walls.
He thinks they enable him to enjoy the high life.
But up there on those self-made walls of success, sex or salary, life can get a little shaky.
Up on a wall, leaning forward or backward just a bit too much comes with a cost.
In fact, when the wind of suffering and sin blows, Humpty falls off the wall only to blast apart in shards of gooey shell.
You might say he even feels dry and forsaken after the gravity of his situation presents itself.
Ever been there? I’ve fallen off more walls this week than I can remember.
As we march toward Good Friday, many of us are starting to think about Christ and his God-forsaken cross.
As we ache and groan at the base of the walls we’ve fallen from, let’s take a fresh look at the cross.
When we look at the cross and listen to the words of Jesus, something surprising happens.
- We actually begin to become un-humpty-dumptied in two transformative ways.
The first way we become un-humpty-dumptied happens as we listen and believe Jesus say the following words: “I am thirsty.” (John 19:28).
Did you hear that? Jesus actually admitted, as he hung up there on that cross in the place of sinners, that he was dying of thirst.
I’ve heard Jesus say a bunch of “I Am” sayings like, “I am the bread of life, I am the light of the world”…etc.
Since he was fully God, those statements sound reasonable.
But to hear his say “I AM THIRSTY” magnetizes my mind and heart to trust Him in his humanity too.
As a flesh and blood guy, he actually slipped on human skin with thirst receptors and all. His physical thirst was real and desperate as he bled to death.
Our hearts are thirsty too.
We erect so many strategic, self-salvation walls to perch on for a sense of purpose.
But endless effort and earning only make our dry, spongy hearts brittle and breakable.
I “say” Jesus saved me from my sin, and yet I “live” looking up to pseudo-saviors like possessions, people and power.
I sip on entertainment, gulp up activity after activity, and finally slurp with a straw the latest information about everything.
And yet I’m still thirsty.
As we hear Jesus scream “I AM THIRSTY” we realize that he thirsted under the righteous wrath of God in our place.
When we believe this personally, we become un-humpty-dumptied.
It’s like the cold snow, packed and pressing on the roof of our lives, becomes sun-warmed and slowly slides off.
We begin to be put back together again.
We begin to sip and swallow His love for us.
His thirst wasn’t quenched so that my thirst would be quenched forever.
And this transaction between him and the Father, where he was penalized for my treason, becomes the very means of my transformation.
I am becoming un-humpty-dumptied!
The second way to become un-humpty-dumptied happens as we hear Jesus say “My God, my God, Why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46)
Jesus coughed these sad words through thirsty lips, three hours after he was hoisted up on the cross.
Three hours of depressing God-forsakeness.
The savior that arrived in supernatural starlight, (see Matthew 2) hung high on a cross in the dark.
I am the one that climbs atop my achievements as I sit in the dark with a smug look of pride.
But it’s really dark up here.
I feel lonely and separated from others.
Up on my self-made wall, I feel superior to others.
But then I find someone with a wall that is just a little higher-- and begin to feel inferior.
I’m either prideful or depressed.
Either way, I feel distanced from friends and family.
Jesus hung suspended between heaven and earth, forsaken by the Father, so that I could have fellowship with God and others forever.
As I look at his forsakenness, I become un-humpty-dumptied.
I will never be fully forsaken because he was forsaken for me.
I am wanted, loved and knitted to the Father, through the Son, by the Spirit.
My cracked self is being fixed up.
I kneel at the foot of the cross gazing at my thirsting, forsaken King, and my heart suddenly flutters with hope.
Because he fell apart…
I am whole.
I’m so looking forward to Good Friday!
Metro North Church