Sunday, March 29, 2015

Stations of the Cross (9)

Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem (Luke 23:27-31)

Luke 23:27–31 (NIV84)
27 A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him. 28 Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. 29 For the time will come when you will say, ‘Blessed are the barren women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ 30 Then “ ‘they will say to the mountains, “Fall on us!” and to the hills, “Cover us!” ’ 31 For if men do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

As Jesus continued,
painfully stumbling along the road to Calvary,
a group of women joined themselves to the procession,
wailing in the manner normally considered
appropriate for a funeral procession.
But Jesus told them to cry out to God
for themselves and their own children.

Some of us are never far from tears,
and some of us have forced ourselves not to cry.
Bring our tears into Your captivity and direction,
that they respond to Your voice.
Lord, You have the words of eternal life.
Lord, You have the words of eternal life.

You are with us in our pain
and suffering. Companion in our loneliness.
You know our needs and desires,
our hunger and passion.
Lord, You have the words of eternal life.
Lord, You have the words of eternal life.


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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Stations of the Cross (8)

Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus to carry his cross (Luke 23:26)

Luke 23:26 (NIV84)
26 As they led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus.

Simon carried the cross of Christ,
he was forced to, by the soldiers;
only later did he recognise his privilege
in shouldering the burden of the One
who made the worlds.

He was compelled to carry the cross
part of the way for Jesus,
and felt the gratitude of this Man above all men;
and amid the pity Simon felt for Him,
he felt a burning compassion flowing back to him from Jesus,
 a burning, life-changing love.
Simon carried the cross of Christ.

As Simon took the weight of the cross from Jesus,
You have taught us that we must bear one another's
burdens, and so fulfil the law of Love.
May we carry Your cross.
May we carry Your cross.

Simon was one just passing by,
but suddenly he was compelled to change direction,
and, with all his strength given
to the carrying of the cross,
pressed through the crowds
to the place of the Skull.
Golgotha, Calvary,
Sweet Jesus, like Simon,
May we carry Your cross.
May we carry Your cross.


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Friday, March 27, 2015

Stations of the Cross (7)

Jesus takes up the cross (Mark 15:20)

Mark 15:20 (NIV84)
20 And when they had mocked him, they took off the purple robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him out to crucify him.

Jesus  had willingly embraced the cross,
but His physical body was weak from lack of sleep,
from the pressures of arrest and trial,
and from torture and beating.

The spirit is willing,
but the flesh is weak.
Jesus said , Yes,
but His holy body hesitated
and He fell to His knees,
determining to rise again even in His weakness.

You embraced and shouldered Your cross,
but Your body was weak.
Your Body is still weak:
Your people shrink from the weight of suffering.
In our weakness, Lord, let us pray:
Your will be done.
Your will be done.

Jesus, You were first a carpenter:
build us into what You desire,
and secure every joint tightly,
that we may hold together.
Plane the rough surfaces of our relationships.
We are Your workmanship-
Your will be done.
Your will be done.

Jesus, You said 'YES' to the Father's will;
and only Your body hesitated.
May we, Your Body, no longer hesitate,
but follow You in Your obedience, saying:
Your will be done.
Your will be done.


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