Monday, 17 April 2017

He Chose the Nails--- My God what have you forsaken me?

“He Chose the Nails”

                It is Holy Week and our journey through Lent leads us to
the scene on Mount Calvary where three crosses with three men are hanging. This manner of capital punishment is called crucifixion and is one of the most painful ways to die. Two thieves are dying along with Jesus. It is upon him we focus because Jesus on the cross is a symbol of our faith.
                Jesus speaks out loud, My God what have you forsaken me? A Pharisee sneered sarcastically, “he’s calling Elijah.” But no one laughed as Jesus yelled out loud in pain. And then Jesus said, “It is finished Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” He breathed in and out and then silence. All was quiet- no more mocking. Jesus is dead.
The soldiers are now cleaning up the dead. Two men who knew Jesus are given the body of Jesus. And what is left at the foot of the cross? Nails, crosses in the horizon, a crown of thorns with blood.
                These nails held your sins. One criminal would be with Jesus and the other not. It seems absurd and ironic but how did Jesus redeem us in this moment? Why would God enable Jesus’ death to occur like this?
                Jesus came to the cross with scarred hands and then offered forgiveness. After flogging, he promised acceptance. He took the path to take us to be with him in paradise/ heaven.  But what are we bringing to him? This Good Friday, what do we bring to Jesus as we look upon his death. He chose the nails for us. He did it for you. What is your response? Are you seeking his love and forgiveness and are you looking for hope beyond this life?
For many years you have heard the story of Jesus’ death but imagine if you were really at the foot of the cross. What do you see as Jesus has nails hammered into his wrists and ankles; as his blood flows on his face, hands and feet? What are you thinking about?—you or him? Jesus did this for you. Jesus died this way for you. How do you respond? Offer your prayers to God—prayers of thanksgiving, prayers of hope, prayers of joy.
For we must remember that Jesus did die. But he also told his disciples that he would rise again. Do you believe in the resurrection of Christ? How do you know he is alive? Does he live within you? Pray and ask forgiveness, receive Christ into your life or renew your faith as you live for him.

Thank you for your love Lord, and giving us your Son Jesus. He cried out wondering if you abandoned him and sometimes so do we. Help us to realize the gift of life eternal we may receive because of Jesus. Help us to know you and build our relationship with you. Reveal to us also, Easter joy, and the hope of eternal life. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 Reflections based upon Max Lucado,   He Chose the Nails, ch.12- 13

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