Good Friday

Lent ends with a mirror: I am the mocker, the spitter, the thief. Like a child resenting their small role in the pageant, I greet grace with a petulant, What about me? This is me. My role is the soldier with the reed and the crown, the voice crying, Crucify! and, Messiah, come down. I’mContinue reading “Good Friday”

Christmas 2: Never Faint Nor Fear

Today, as well as the day for the year’s biggest sales, is also Boxing Day and, as the mysterious carol “Good King Wenceslas” should remind us, St Stephen’s Day. Most likely the Stephen commemorated today was the one martyred in the Acts of the Apostles, so one tradition of today is to sing carols thatContinue reading “Christmas 2: Never Faint Nor Fear”

20 Contemplations #7: Crux

…he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (Philippians 2:8) Did He view the Cross from birth? Did crossbeams In the stable tell Him where He’d go? Did He see the Cross in treetops’ glow As He flew to earth from Heaven’s beams? Perhaps as Joseph carvedContinue reading “20 Contemplations #7: Crux”

20 Contemplations #6: At Creation

All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:3) First birdsong and flight; new heavens groaning; These things we cannot see. They precede Sight, consciousness. All we know, he exceeds: The Face behind the flame and the foaming. Nothing made without Him: He moves across AstronomyContinue reading “20 Contemplations #6: At Creation”

Lent: The Wait, the Weight 3

Held down by denial, oppressed by oblivion, as torrents break we fancy them a whirlpool. Nothing prepares for this crisis of self, when the spirit, crying, How long, how long? hears instead the call to crawl into the dust and weep. To whom have You dealt thus? Yet no better are we who bear YourContinue reading “Lent: The Wait, the Weight 3”

Lent: Man of Sorrows 6

And keep –     keep me, keep watch, keep hope. The pains that crush me are like pricks beside Your agony, and yet           You hold arms out as though to gather in more pain, more shame, and thus            more me. Man of sorrows,         what a name,         what a scheme   thatContinue reading “Lent: Man of Sorrows 6”

Lent: Man of Sorrows 4

Lay me down – slow me down and lay me down upon the Cross, in Jesus’ hands. Slow my heart and silence all the numb self-serving of my pleas; stifle pride, unlock the clench of fists deep in this fickle dust. Lay me down, my soul; lay down my soul in Jesus’ hands. Their scars haveContinue reading “Lent: Man of Sorrows 4”

Lent: Man of Sorrows 2

My God, my God: head full of wounds, You cry. My God, my God: what rupture in the godhead makes perfect veins now burst? What depth of love plumbs so low that even earth shakes at impact? My God, my God, have mercy. I wound my head and choose these depths; yet, Man of Sorrows,Continue reading “Lent: Man of Sorrows 2”

Catechism 25

Does Christ’s death mean all our sins can be forgiven? Yes, because Christ’s death on the cross fully paid the penalty for our sin, God graciously imputes Christ’s righteousness to us as if it were our own and will remember our sins no more. (New City Catechism) All? It seems a dream which never humanContinue reading “Catechism 25”

Catechism 24

Why was it necessary for Christ, the Redeemer, to die? Since death is the punishment for sin, Christ died willingly in our place to deliver us from the power and penalty of sin and bring us back to God. By his substitutionary atoning death, he alone redeems us from hell and gains for us forgivenessContinue reading “Catechism 24”