Whoever serves me must follow me
|Painting by Michael O'Brien at www.swordofthespirit.com|
Moving towards Holy Week and Easter we remember how Jesus made His journey into Jerusalem. His journey had highs and lows and we know it was the journey to His cross. We may find that following Jesus' journey through Lent is not always easy. As we try to refrain from some of our usual luxuries, as we try to give a little bit extra to others and as we try to pray a little more we may find many of these things challenging.
As we attempt to walk this journey in memory of the journey Jesus made to his ultimate sacrifice for us, it pays to wonder who we are in His story. In Jesus' story there is only one Jesus. There are many heroes and martyrs in our faith. St Peter was perhaps one of the greatest. But as Peter walked the first Lenten journey with Jesus, he failed. When Jesus was arrested, Peter denied knowledge of Him. He was scared to stand up for what he knew was true.
There were the people who cheered and acclaimed their King when Jesus first entered Jerusalem and yet these were the same ones baying for His blood less than a week later. The Jews got tied up in their pedantry, politics and jealousy. Pilate kept out of it, he washed his hands as if it wasn't his responsibility when it clearly was. One of Jesus' closest friends betrayed Jesus and the disciples fell asleep and eventually all ran away.
All of these stories are of people who showed "normal" human weakness. All of the characters in this story have something to teach us. The amazing thing is that Jesus continued His dogged journey towards the cross, to save those people and to save us. So as we've passed the mid point in our Lenten journey and maybe feel as if we're forgetting what its about, it is worth reminding ourselves who we are following. On this path Jesus certainly got His boots muddy and so do we.