“You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. The man who walks in the dark does not know where he is going. Put your trust in the light while you have it, so that you may become sons of light.” (John 12:35)
It’s Wednesday morning of Holy Week. We are nearing the end of our Lenten Journey. Lent is, without a doubt, a long and difficult trek. Passage through Holy Week has been fairly compared to a walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death that David describes in the 23rd Psalm. And, like the Psalm, this journey ends very well. The joy in the dawn of Easter morning makes it all worthwhile.
PRAYER: (from the Lectionary)
Lord God, whose blessed Son our Savior gave his body to be whipped and his face to be spit upon: Give us grace to accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be revealed; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever, AMEN.
PRAYER FOCUS: Being Amazed at Jesus
How do you respond to a miracle? What do you say? What would witnessing a mighty miracle—or being its recipient—make you believe?
When Jesus entered the Temple in Jerusalem he didn’t just come to argue with the priests and scribes. He did what he always did…
Jesus taught: He related the Parables of the Two Sons, of the Tenants, and of the Wedding Banquet. (Matt. 21:28-22:14, Mark 12:1-11, Luke 20:9-19)
Jesus performed miraculous healings: “The blind and the lame came to him, and he healed them.” (Matt. 21:14-15)
He did these great things because he loved greatly.
Jesus was, in a word, amazing.
(Music by Phillips, Craig & Dean. Footage from the movie “Jesus of Nazareth”. Presented under license from IgniterMedia.)
It is clear from the four gospels that wherever Jesus went, people were amazed. Whether they were rich or poor, young or old, sick or well, friends or enemies — people were amazed at Jesus. As an interesting footnote, in the Bible (NIV) the word amazed is mentioned thirty-nine times, always referring to how people were amazed at Jesus.
What is not commonly known is that there was one occasion where Jesus was also amazed. In Mark 6, Jesus returns to his hometown only to discover that many were opposed to him. In this context Jesus too is amazed — amazed at their lack of faith.
The choice is ours.
With all the terrible things that are about to happen starting on Thursday, we thought it appropriate to remind our readers what a wonderful human being Jesus was, and how much he loved people. All of the ones he healed and encouraged and forgave and reached out to and stood by and touched–he loved them with a pure, powerful, and utterly amazing love.
This is Wednesday morning of Holy Week. The Scriptures are silent about the events of this day in the life of Jesus of Nazareth. We assume he spent the time enjoying his closest friends, and preparing for the darkness that would fall the next day. We pray you will take time to simply be amazed. May God bless you and give you rest.
In Western Christianity, the Wednesday before Easter is sometimes known as “Spy Wednesday”, as a reference to the betrayal of Jesus by Judas Iscariot, indicating that it is the day that Judas Iscariot first conspired with the Sanhedrin to betray Jesus for thirty silver coins.
In the Orthodox Church, this day is called “Holy and Great Wednesday.”