Lenten Reflections: Stations of the Cross, Station 10

Station 10: Jesus is Stripped of his Garments

Written Reflection:

Jesus is now stripped for his garments. He is now totally open, vulnerable, able to feel the shameful looks and angry stares of the crowd. As the soldiers rip off his garments it opens the poorly closed wounds and fresh blood is seen.

Jesus stands naked, bloody, as people jeer at him. He is completely defenseless before them, as a lamb led towards the slaughter. And as the people look at him, Jesus looks to heaven. Picture the anger of crowd, the condemnation, the pride, and the arrogance. Take a moment and confess when you too have looked down at someone. Confess to Jesus moments when you have been like that crowd, and receive his forgiveness

Silencing Death and Learning to Speak

On Sunday I’m going to be preaching about death. In preperation for Sunday I thought I’d write a brilliant series of blog posts on death. But the reality is I’m struggling to simply write just this one…

Eberhard Jüngel wrote,  “Death is mute, and renders us speechless.” That’s what I’m feeling. I’m feeling speechless, drained, and unsure of what to say. This is why I hate death; it simply takes too much…

So why write at all? Why preach on death? Why not just talk about something else?

Well, because then death would win. When we refuse to talk about it, to enter into it, or to journey with people struggling with it, death wins because it separates us, it isolates us, and leaves us speechless. So on Sunday I’m not going to let death win and together we are going to talk about death. We are going to explore why death happens, what death really is, how you get through it, and how you can face it.

I know for some in our congregation this topic will hit very close to home. It will for me as well, because Sunday is the anniversary of my dad’s death 2 years ago. Krista asked me, wouldn’t I rather just take the Sunday off and be by myself? And the anwser is no. I won’t let death stop me from doing what I love – preaching. I won’t let death stop me from following my calling. And I won’t let death separate me on a hard day from the family and church that I love. Death has already taken too much, and I won’t let it take anymore.

So Sunday we will stop death from rendering us speechless. We will talk about it, heal through it, and discover that death is the last enemy, but it is not an enemy that lasts

And who knows maybe next week I’ll have something brilliant to write. Being honest and open will have to do for today…