Good Friday

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I do not want to need the cross,
but I do.

I do not want to say,
go ahead, die for me, I need it —
but I have to.
I do need it.

I want to be able to step into the scene,
in between Jesus and his accusers,
and say, Stop!
This has to stop,
this must not happen!
Do not hurt this man!
I love him!

I want to turn around,
take in my hands the face
of the Man of Sorrows,
and whisper,
You do not have to do this for me.

But I think I know what his response would be.

He would look at me with tenderness and say,
Yes I do.
I must prove to you that there is no limit to my love for you,
no limit to what I would do for you.
I must be willing to be dragged all the way under,
to the utter depths of human darkness,
and left for dead,
so I can explode out in glory,
break every chain,
and bring the kingdom of heaven to the here and now.

***

I listen to this.
I stand, for just a moment,
face to face with my Lord,
briefly stopping time
on this dreadful road to the cross.

Then,
I bow my head,
drop my hands,
melt back into the crowd,
and relinquish Jesus to this unfolding story —
this horrible, beautiful story
of evil,
redemption,
and the steadfast, eternal,
passionate love of God
for each and every one of us.


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