Crucifixion

A man being crucified

What do you see?
So many seeing different things:

A mother weeping for her son
The crowds jeering at a con man
another deadbeat dying
The rabbis see a blasphemer getting his just rewards
And fold their arms in satisfaction 
The Romans see a rabble rouser put down
And heave sighs of relief
His friends see the end of their dreams
Confusion and grief in their hearts
Or 30 pieces of silver in their pocket
The women weep.
Some see a fellow convict
Refusing to curse and die.
Pilate sees a mystery.
His enemies see revenge satisfied 
The disinterested see just another day
The soldiers see just another criminal
Too late they see that
Truly this is the son of God

Who sees the opened armed sacrifice
being made for all men and all salvation?
Abundant life poured out
In blood and tears
At the place of the skull for us

After the stench of torture and death
Comes a fragrance of life
Doors flung open to eternity
For all who chose to follow
Who sees?

Surrounded by people
Your greatest victory was born in solitude and pain
Father forgive us, we know not what we do.

Golgotha

oops – forgot to post yesterday, so two offerings today. Here we are, Good Friday, remembering the darkest of days. We know the events through the bible and with hindsight. I cannot imagine how the mother of Jesus, or his friends felt at the crucifixion, not knowing what would follow.

I watched a much loved sister die over a relatively short period of time a few years ago. Sitting at her bedside, watching her lovely face grow thinner, seeing her slipping away in front of my eyes, was agonising. Yet I kept thinking about Mary, watching Jesus die before her eyes, an unimaginably more painful death with no pain relief, no nurses, and so alone.

He would have been naked, exposed, his skin gouged, his face beaten…publicly derided and humiliated. I cannot imagine watching that happen to a much loved son, to someone you loved more than yourself.

The Death
Mary watched and wept
as the torture proceeded
not knowing that each and every
savage, painful moment

drew You closer to home
to the place where
tears are tenderly wiped away
and glory is inhaled with every breath.

Every step on the highway to death
forged a path to a life that will never perish.

And when deepest blackness
darkened the sky
and utter bleakness
stole Your soul
that was the last grasp of evil’s fingers upon You.

Never again can the tentacles of death
trap those in whom Your Spirit inhabits.

For we are free
and more alive than we will ever know
even while we die.

I will fear no evil. For the Good Shepherd is by my side.
Father forgive them, they know not what they do

The only certainty more sure
than our past, present and future
blind
mindless
murder
of God

is
His
open arms
offering
free
forgiveness
to the killers.