Holy Week Confession

thornsI’m grateful for Saturday — the day after Good Friday. The intense emotions of Holy Week wear me out and a breather is welcome.

Engaging in the events that marked the last week of Jesus’ life on earth was a struggle for me this year. I didn’t know if I had it in me to walk through the suffering and death of my Jesus yet again. Every year it seems to hurt more. I seriously considered just going through the motions and pushing through the dark days until the relief and rejoicing of the empty tomb on Easter morning.

In other words, I wanted to skip the suffering and go straight to the celebration.

It doesn’t work.

Because going through the motions is exactly how to engage the emotions. As a pastor’s wife, Holy Week services are not optional. I intended to show up, but I planned to keep my heart guarded and not enter in to the agonizing story once more. But showing up was all it took for God to break down my resistance.

On Thursday, I sat in the quiet sanctuary, drew near to the table, tasted the bread, swallowed the juice. I took Him in.

On Friday, I heard the words of Isaiah and Luke, surveyed the wondrous cross, sang, “If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.” He took me in.

Going through the motions is what ushered me straight into His presence.

On this blessed quiet Saturday, I am remembering that the day after the death of Christ is also the day before the glorious life of Christ. But it is the suffering of yesterday that gives weight to the jubilant joy of tomorrow.

“Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”         Psalm 30:5

Holy Week

There I was, thinking about how it’s already Holy Week…..

and I hadn’t even given it much thought.

I hadn’t contemplated the bread and the wine….

I hadn’t kept watch in the garden….

I hadn’t walked the Via Dolorosa.

There I was, thinking that Easter was creeping up on me

and that I might miss it this year.

I was wrong.

I have been experiencing Easter Life to the full.

Here I am, witness to life bursting forth from the dark womb.

Here I am, staying awake into the night to watch and pray.

Here I am, washing the feet of my daughter, serving her needs.

Here I am, holding in my very hands life — downy soft, sweet smelling life.

Indeed, this has been the holiest of Holy Weeks.