Holy Friday

As I leave the kitchen table from my Bible reading this morning, moving into the few tasks ahead… may I take time to be still throughout this day. To focus on what He did for me. May I reflect upon the hours He suffered, after already suffering such humiliation and utter betrayal.

May I rest quietly later, thinking about the darkness, the mocking assassins, His Mama watching… in her own searing pain.

May I close my eyes and envision the curtain being torn in two. Removing the divide between a Holy God and my sinful self. May I deeply reflect upon all that He gave up.

May I never get so accustomed to Jesus’ death that it doesn’t make me cry. May I never get so accustomed to the Resurrection that it doesn’t leave me in awe and amazement.

This Holy “Week” has still passed too quickly. I have not devoted enough time to His Holiness. May today be holy. Reverent. Slower. Aware. Grateful. Praying. May I stop again and again and again throughout this day – remembering.

 

Hanging on When the Winds Blow Hard

The branches in my Northeastern town remain bare. Last November’s leaves are still strewn on the ground, some lightly covered in a dusting of snow.

Despite the windiest winter ever, the few leaves in the photos hung on. Wind, snow and cold fought hard to rip those leaves off as they had pulled down every other leaf in sight.

Those. Held.

While these branches wouldn’t be considered a vine and the paper thin leaves are certainly not fruit, I thought of that scripture when looking at these photos I took a few days ago.

“I am the vine, and you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will bear much fruit; for you can do nothing without me.” John 15:5 GNT

The verse is actually speaking of not being able to produce good things (“fruit” such as love, joy, patience…) without remaining attached to Jesus (the vine). Depending on what’s going on, it’s not even “good things” I’m clinging to Him for. Sometimes, we hang on tight merely to survive the smaller struggles that can overtake our time and minds – swiftly ripping us from the Vine – if we’re not paying attention.

“Remain alert. Keep standing firm in your faith. Keep on being courageous and strong.” 1 Cor. 16:13