I’m heading overseas shortly. Not for long, but an International flight will be involved. So as a result I will queue up more than once as I process through check in, immigration, security, customs etc. I can’t circumvent these steps, it’s part of the journey to enable me to visit a distant land. My destination and purpose of my trip (work!) will keep me patiently queuing and standing and waiting. I’ll endure it all so I can get to my destination. I know that on the other side is the plane for me to board and the country for me to visit.
During Lent, we can give pause to think of Jesus on the before side of the Cross, His death and His resurrection. How must He have felt? How must He have longed to avoid it? To avoid the pain, the suffering, the horror. Jesus, while fully God was also fully man, so this journey to the Cross would not have been without fear or anguish. Yet He pressed on, He continued. He rode into the City of Jerusalem knowing He was days away from arrest and crucifixion. He shared Passover with His disciples knowing that this side of the Cross it was the last meal that He would share with them.
Why did He stay on this journey to the Cross? Why did He endure it?
For us! For you, for me! Out of love for us and love for the Father. For our redemption. How incredible, what a sacrifice that Jesus would endure all of this, for us, to restore us as sons and daughters of God.
“For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ” (Hebrews 12:2)
“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)
There’s a first time for everything they say. But there are some things, a lot of things, that you don’t ever expect or want to experience. Today, I had one those experiences. I was enjoying a late morning coffee with my sister, (if midday can be considered late morning!) after a morning of errands, or should I say shopping, when I was accosted by a shop employee with two security guards in tow. Apparently my behaviour in a shop an hour earlier had led them to believe that I had stolen a handbag. Yes I love handbags, and blush, yes I had bought one from the said shop, but no I had not stooped to stealing it! As it was, at $12 it was a steal anyway! I produced said receipt, and was left dumbfounded as to what else I could say to attest for my innocence. Finally and fortunately they left.
Forget that I just heard a great message on not getting offended! The obvious confrontation in the middle of the mall left me wanting justice, wanting to protest my innocence and right the wrong that had occurred. I was not carted off to jail but the public accusation left me unsettled and yes somewhat miffed. It certainly left me at no loss of words as to what had happened.
It’s definitely hard when we’re unfairly accused, when our character, our reputation is slighted, to remain quiet. But there is one who did remain quiet. Quiet as He was falsely accused, as His character was maligned. He remained quiet as He was mocked, quiet as He was insulted. Worse still, He was beaten by His accusers. And then, this innocent, blameless one was judged guilty, condemned and crucified.
No harm came to me today. It was a trivial matter. But it has prompted me to think how strong and brave My Lord was to stand and say nothing in His defense. Knowing the consequences, knowing what the outcome was to be. Knowing that the path was to continue to the Cross. He remained silent for me!
My song is love unknown,
My Saviour’s love to me;
Love to the loveless shown,
That they might lovely be.
O who am I,
That for my sake
My Lord should take
Frail flesh and die?