by Rev. Mona Chicks, CFDM Board Member
Lent is a time of preparation. Some say it is a time to put on the suffering of Jesus, but I’ve been reflecting lately that God put on our suffering, stepped into our shoes, so that we could be lifted above our circumstances and participate in the glory of God. God became human flesh and walked among us, lived a life that was completely and fully human in the person of Jesus. He can walk with us through our suffering and through our celebration because he has walked through them on his own. He knows. He’s been there.
But the significance of Jesus’ life and passion isn’t simply in his humanity and relevance to our human experience. It’s truly redemptive in that Jesus has taken the one thing that was keeping us, individually and collectively, away from God – sin – and He bore it upon his own shoulders so that there would be nothing more to keep us away. There would be no more curtain separating us from the Holy Place – there’s no need for endless sacrifices and offerings. Jesus did it – once for all, High Priest and sacrifice in one being. And why? For the glory of God.
Hebrews 12:2b-3 says,“Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up.” There was always the final goal in mind – the suffering was not the purpose. Our suffering is not the purpose. We will endure it, we must go through it – but all of it is preparing us for something greater than we can imagine. The joy that is awaiting us all.
In the final days of this Lenten season, I am seeking out God’s glory and letting it filter more deeply into my life. I walk the path to Jerusalem in preparation for the joy, the hope, and the salvation that the resurrection has already secured for me. Glory be to God.