Reflecting on Luke 22: 14-23:56
It’s weird, the things you remember. I’m sure I’ve been thirstier, or hotter, or in more pain than that sweltering hot Good Friday many years ago. But carrying four bags of groceries up several flights of stairs at three in the afternoon that particular day imprinted on me an awareness of just a fraction of the pain of Calvary, and that’s the day I realized how central to our faith is the Suffering Servant.
It’s not that the Father requires it. It’s that we require a God who knows thirst, who knows pain, who knows terror, who knows us. I can’t think of an experience of sorrow that Jesus didn’t know, and I take much comfort in that.
He knew the little stuff―like arms burning from carrying a few bags up a few flights of stairs―because he endured the big stuff, like carrying the crossbeam of his cross up the hill of Calvary.
He knew the pain we suffer when our friends don’t love us, because the night before he died, Peter, withering under the scrutiny of a maid in Caiaphas’s courtyard, denied that he had ever known him.
Do you have asthma? Jesus knows what it is to struggle for breath. It was the particular torture of crucifixion that the victim eventually asphyxiated from pulling up to get air, then collapsing down again.
Someday the little pains of our lives will magnify. The diminishments of old age will bring us to our knees, and we will pray one last time, Jesus, remember me.
And then he who was obedient unto death, even death on a cross, will say to us, “This day you will be with me in Paradise.”
What particular affliction in your life did Jesus also suffer?
Kathy McGovern ©2016