Lent – Week 6 Good Friday

El Greco's Jesus Carrying the Cross, 1580.Image via Wikipedia
Here we are at the end of Lent. We are at a point, which for the disciples, must have been the darkest day of their lives. Surely it wasn’t so long ago that had this conversation:

When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”

 “Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.”
 Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?”
 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
 Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being.
Matthew 16:13-17
Where had all that gone? They thought he was to be King and now he was dead. They must have felt such despair. How blessed we are to be able to stand at Good Friday, knowing that the Glory of Easter Day will soon be upon us.
We can stand and see both the loving sacrifice of Jesus which paid for all our sins, and His mighty resurrection which is victory over death and a pathway to restoration. 
All through lent, in these thoughts, we have been thinking about giving up consumerism. Consumerism says, life is about you, your happiness. You should have all these things you see, by right. Consumerism says your material comfort is of the utmost importance and it is unjust for you not to have these things.
The cross says “not my will but yours”. Not even my life, but Yours. 
And as we stand in awe of what Jesus gave, we can look back and hear his words:
“‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.  A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” 
Matthew 22:37-40
 We know we are called to more than just our own needs, our own  comfort. And then we look forward to the words of the risen Jesus:
Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.  Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” 
Matthew 28:18-21
Life really is all about Jesus. About being agents of His Kingdom here on earth and about drawing people into the knowledge of his love, sacrifice and great victory.
I wonder what this Easter will bring us? I wonder how the Spirit might speak to us through our Bible reading and the services we attend? I wonder what commission Jesus will give us for the weeks and months to come.
We can be sure of this, if we lay down our own wants and take up His, we will find Him true to His word: And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.
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