Father, into Your Hands, Luke 23:44-46
Jesus died. There is nothing divine in this death that kept it from being a real and final human death. Jesus wasn’t asleep; he was dead. The whole creation seemed to know, for there was darkness at noon, at a latitude on our globe where this was not normal. Two sounds accompany this scene that had become quiet with the darkness. The first was Jesus’ cry, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit” (v 46). The second was the sound of the curtain of the temple ripping in two, from the top down. And there was, of course, the sound of weeping.
Jesus’ death was as real as the death of our loved ones. His death was as real as the death we face. Jesus knew he was dying. Friends and family saw him die. Enemies and distracters suddenly sensed the significance of this death, and all death.
This Mid-Day Night
The Savior’s grief, a healing sorrow;
His night a womb for our tomorrow.
His tears, his water, and his blood;
This mid-day night, a womb for our tomorrow.
The Savior’s death, the Parent’s loss, the Spirit’s leaving.
How long this darkness, death, and grieving?
The temple veil rips as for birth.
He speaks his last in shouted, labored breathing.
The Savior’s pain, a human shouting;
The Savior’s death, the Spirit parting.
He cries our tears, he bleeds our blood;
This mid-day night, the life in death concealing.
The Savior dies, a stillness creeping;
A quiet darkness, save for weeping.
No jeers, no insults, no more taunts;
This mid-day night, no hope for dawn revealing.
Let us receive the Savior’s death with humility and find in it transformation of our living.
A word about the series
The Lenten season has always inspired many people to create everything from poems, art and music to a completely new direction in their lives. This Lenten season Tabernacle will be exploring many of those creations in the hope of inspiring you to compose in a medium that is natural for you. The paintings in the Sanctuary are of the Biblical Stations of the Cross. The artist, Grieg Leach, completed them in 2010. They will help us to visualize the events leading to the crucifixion of Jesus. In addition to the paintings there is a Lenten devotional booklet, Return to Me, which is available in print or online. The Stations of the Cross also inspired these devotions, written by Terry York of Baylor University. Living with these two bodies of artistic expression based on the Biblical Stations of the Cross throughout the season of Lent should help us as we seek to return our lives to God by walking with Jesus though his final days.
Pray, read, think and return to God.
All scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible.
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