06 April 2009

Monday in Holy Week

I begin Holy Week in a place of deep mourning having buried five family members and friends. I believe that this Holy Week and Easter will mean more to me than in any previous year.

I came to this Passion Sunday both physically and mentally exhausted and the events of this great week have only just begun.

I think that Jesus must have felt like this, too. The whole of his ministry was spent caring for people, providing for them, teaching them, comforting them -- all the things that discharge the battery. He had no time of recharging himself before the greatest trial of his mortal existence. Yet, he chose to continue on the journey he accepted although he must have been exhausted before it began.

A Lamb goes uncomplaining forth,
The guilt of all men bearing;
And laden with the sins of earth,
None else the burden sharing!
Goes patient on, grow weak and faint,
To slaughter led without complaint,
That spotless life to offer;
Bears shame and stripes, and wounds and death,
Anguish and mockery, and saith,
"Willing all this I suffer."

This Lamb is Christ, the soul's great Friend,
The Lamb of God, our Savior;
Him God the Father chose to send
To gain for us His favor.
"Go forth, My Son," the Father saith,
"And free men from the fear of death,
From guilt and condemnation.
The wrath and stripes are hard to bear,
But by Thy Passion men shall share
The fruit of Thy salvation."

"Yea, Father, yea, most willingly
I'll bear what Thou commandest;
My will conforms to Thy decree,
I do what Thou demandest."
O wondrous Love, what hast Thou done!
The Father offers up His Son!
The Son, content, descendeth!
O Love, how strong Thou art to save!
Thou beddest Him within the grave
Whose word the mountains rendeth.