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  • Writer's pictureKimberly Vernetti

Focused on the Cross

Updated: Feb 11, 2019

Tonight we had a Maundy Thursday service at our church. Though somber, it’s one of my favorite services of the year because it’s the service in which we pause and recognize the totality of the sacrifice made on the cross. Easter is easily my favorite holiday, but by the time we get to Sunday we will be focusing on celebrating the resurrection of our savior which is great! But, as my pastor pointed out tonight, we don’t want to miss the opportunity to really focus on what Jesus did for us on the cross. Sunday night we watched the movie Risen at church. Tonight, as we sat in silence reflecting on Jesus I kept seeing the images from the movie that have played over and over in my head all week. Jesus on the cross, a nail in each hand, and one through both feet, blood, sweat and dirt. Mary in the crowd crying, no, wailing, inconsolable, her son suffering for all man-kind. In that moment was she thinking about the gift he was giving the world or was she just simply mourning for her son. The disciples scattered and running scared. The spear piercing Jesus’ side. The unrelenting hate from the cheering crowds. These images are mild compared to what I’m sure the real scene looked like and yet they still cause me to cringe. Until a few years ago I must confess that I selfishly didn’t like to read about the crucifixion. It made me uncomfortable to think of Jesus suffering the way he did and I preferred to focus on the resurrection instead. That all changed when I read John 17:20, “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message.” When I realized that Jesus prayed for ME as he prepared himself for the cross, it made it all much more personal. And not only did he pray for ME, but he also went to the cross for ME. He brutally payed the price for MY sin. He ensured MY salvation. He reinstated MY relationship to the Father. And here’s the good news……. he did all of that for YOU too. Sunday, we will celebrate the resurrection. He is ALIVE! He did overcome the grave, Hallelujah! Until then, I hope you too will visit the cross where you can lay your burdens down, pick up your crown and praise God for his great act of love. “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

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