It’s been some years now since I have sat down and watched the movie “Ben-Hur” in its entirety, but the above scene is my favorite from that magnificent movie. It is powerful beyond words.
I first saw the movie when I was nine-years-old, and that scene has always remained clear in my memory. Many parts of the film I don’t seem to ever remember, but that scene has forever been engrained in my mind. As a child, I saw the scene as such a special moment. I loved the idea that Jesus was just a normal man who was at work with His carpentry. The way that He stopped what He was doing when He saw Ben-Hur suffering. I loved how Jesus helped a man who was dying of thirst and how no one could stop Him. The look on that centurion’s face says it all once he looks into the face of the Son of God Himself.
As an adult, this scene still brings tears to my eyes. I still feel as I did as a child while watching it, but now I am able to view the scene with a more experienced mind. I’m able to see just what the scene says about Jesus, and who He is for all of us. Our protector. Our Savior. Our Father.
Ben-Hur Asked for His Help
It is in that, where the beauty of the scene comes into play for me. When Ben-Hur collapses on the ground, he doesn’t just cry out for water. But rather, he specifically speaks to God, asking Him for help. It is at that moment that Jesus (still a man of flesh) walks up to him with that eternally refreshing cup of water. And, as Ben-Hur is lead away, he is not only revitalized by this Holy water, but he is also changed, yet he doesn’t realize just how much. Jesus is not the resurrected Christ at that moment, but rather a sinless man with a heart of love for all mankind. He bends down to give Ben-Hur that water because it is what he needs, and Ben-Hur specifically asked for it in God’s name.
Where’s My Cup of Water?
I know that when it’s come to my mental illness, I have cried to God. I have cried for His help. I have asked for Him to please take it all away, or at least take me away and home to Him. I have prayed to Him to please show me the reason why I must deal with all of this. I have waited for my cup of water, but I still have yet to see it.
I greatly wish that I could see Jesus walk up to me with a hand of love and revitalize me, but it doesn’t work like that. He does come into my life, though, because I have felt it and I know it is Him. But, I have always had to look for it. That’s what faith is, though. Faith is my believing even though I cannot see anything physically before me. Faith is my believing when there aren’t any definitive answers in my path. I’ve been told that if I truly believe, and pray to the Lord and talk with Him and allow Him to control my life, then that will create definitive answers inside of me. But, how???
It’s Weird How Things Work Out
Recently, I unexpectedly told someone whom I know about my anxiety. I did not reveal anything about the bipolar, as I was (and still am) afraid of how this person and most of my family and friends will respond. This person’s response to my anxiety was that it was the result of “the enemy” and his hold over my life. If I were to pray more and accept Jesus into my life, then my anxiety will go away.
That’s interesting, ‘cause I thought I already knew Jesus. Hmmm… well then, who the heck have I been speaking to, praying to, and praising all these years?
The entire situation threw me into a confusing mess. I felt lost because on one end I was angry that my faith was being viewed as not good enough. After all, I thought that I had believed, but this person was saying otherwise. But, I also felt a sense of fear. I started questioning everything that I thought I had already known. I thought that maybe all of those times when I was praying to God, that maybe it was actually the enemy who I was talking to instead. Freaky things go through my mind when it’s pushed into a corner, either emotionally or spiritually.
So, which was it? Was it God whom I was speaking to, or was it something else? I realize now that it was indeed God. And, that no matter what that other person may think or say about my situation (thank God I didn’t tell her about the bipolar), I knew what I believed and what I felt inside.
But, here’s where things got weird. This was at the end of February when this all happened. I went from feeling quite depressed from what was said to me, to suddenly having the strong urge to start blogging. I couldn’t understand it. I didn’t think that I would ever have the courage to share my life and struggles in such a way, but the urge was so strong. I had thought about it for over a year at that point, but it wasn’t until then, after all of that situation happened, that I began to become quite obsessed about starting one. I couldn’t understand how a situation that should have made me retreat even further into my already isolated world, made me actually want to do the opposite. So, a week later, I started my blog.
For this reason, I can’t help but wonder if this blog is my cup of water that the Lord has brought me. I think about how blogging has so far been a much more positive experience than I had ever imagined. I don’t have a definitive answer as to whether or not this is my cup, so I’m left with having to just “believe”. That’s all that I can really do. I’m not Ben-Hur with Jesus standing in the flesh before me. But, that doesn’t mean that He isn’t. I’m trying to imagine Jesus holding my head as He did Ben-Hur’s in the movie. I’m trying to imagine Him gently brushing my hair out of my face as He gives me His loving aid. Maybe it’s just me wanting to see this for more than it is, but if it makes me feel better, then whom does it hurt, right?
Today is Holy Thursday. On this day, over two thousand years ago, Jesus celebrated His Last Supper with His disciples. The next few days have always been a bit more emotional for me, as they represent the ultimate and unconditional love that Jesus had, and still has, for all of us. My mood tends to mellow out quite a bit. It’s gotten to be a stronger feeling, as I’ve gotten older. As a kid, I knew what this time of year meant, but it was also a time of the Easter Bunny, Easter baskets, egg hunts and candy. As I have gotten older, and the egg hunts have long gone away (well the little ones in our family still have them), I have become more reflective during these days. I mean don’t get me wrong. I still love the chocolate bunnies. Actually, I’ll be quite disappointed if I don’t get a chance to eat a chocolate covered marshmallow egg this year. They’re kind of like my tradition. But, overall, I view the next few days a bit differently than I used to. I just now better understand what these days mean to my beliefs, more than I did as a child. So, it becomes a more reflective and prayerful time.
While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, ‘Take it; this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it. ‘This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many,’ he said to them. ‘Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.’ When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. Mark 14:22-26 (NIV).