Good Friday: Give It to Jesus on the Cross

 

            During the wonderful Lenten season this year, we priests heard about 12 to 15 hours of confessions each.  I can only  speak for myself here, but time and time again I heard people telling me about their hurt. Some have been hurt terribly by the sins of others, particularly those whom they have loved.  Others hurt due to the results of sin in the world and suffer sickness.  But most of us hurt because of what we have done to ourselves.  Our own sins have come back to haunt us, even if they were committed decades ago.   Maybe it is an abortion that can not be buried in the past.  Maybe we behaved like animals when we were in college or in the military.  Maybe it is the pain of knowing that a person is still hurting from our actions. 

 

            We are all hurting in some way or other.  We are human.  We are imperfect.  We are sinned against.  We sin.

 

            What we need to do is take all of this pain, be it imposed on us or imposed by us, take the pain and give it all to Jesus on the Cross.  That is why he is there.  He died for our sins. He died so we can conquer that addiction, that temper, that buried memory.  Give it all to Jesus. He died on the cross so we can live. Give it all to Jesus.

 

            Way back in 1922, Helen H. Lemmel wrote these lyrics:

              

O soul, are you weary and troubled?
No light in the darkness you see?
There’s a light for a look at the Savior,
And life more abundant and free!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,

Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

Through death into life everlasting
He passed, and we follow Him there;
Over us sin no more hath dominion—
For more than conquerors we are!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

His Word shall not fail you—He promised;
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,His perfect salvation to tell!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

 

            Many, many times I have shared with you the three key daily meditations that will allow God’s love to heal us and flow through us. Today, meditate on these three keys as you come up and venerate the cross.  First: God loves you and me unconditionally.  He did not mount the cross because He has expectations of us.  He loves us for who we are.  He loves us like a mother and father love their infant newborn, only infinitely more.  So I, we, need to recognize our worth.  We are loved by God for whom we are.

           

            Second, God forgives me.  That’s why He’s on the cross in the first place, for the forgiveness of sins.  God forgives me.  We need to forgive ourselves.

 

            And third: God is with me.  There is no reason for any of us to think that we have to handle the difficulties of our lives alone.  He is with us.  All we need to do is recognize His Presence.

 

            Turn your eyes upon Jesus.  He has been crucified because He loves each of us so very, very much.