From: Brittany Yeager
As I’ve listened to and read the various passion narratives this week, I’ve been struck by the loneliness embodied by Jesus as he journeys to the cross. In each account, he is left alone to pray in anguish in the Garden, he is betrayed by a close friend, he is denied by one who promised he would stand firm, he stands alone before Pilate, he alone is scourged and beaten and mocked, and he alone is nailed to the cross. And in the culmination of it all, he is the one who cries aloud before he breathes his last breath, “My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?”
It has been my experience that suffering can often feel lonely and isolating. I can easily succumb to believing that no one understands the pain I am experiencing. I can look around and wonder, “Where are my friends who promised to watch and pray?”
This week, as we meditate upon the final week of our Lord, may we also take up our cross and walk with him in his suffering. May we feel the pain he felt as he wrestled through his own cry of, “Not my will, but yours.” May we stay awake, may we pray and keep watch. And as we walk with him, let us remember that he also walks with us. Whatever pain, darkness, suffering, loneliness, or uncertainty we bring to this week, may we remember that we deeply benefit from the promise of Jesus’ companionship.
And as we gather together this weekend, I pray we look around and remember that we walk with one another. What a gift to have community to physically remind us that we are not alone.