Archive for October 2012

Stations of the Cross: Faithfulness Under Fire

October 26, 2012

I offered the Stations for a leader
who was suffering for implementing Truth…

1st Station: Jesus is condemned to death
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world
(at this point in each Station, I kiss the ground,
as I would if I were in Jerusalem, walking the Via Dolorosa–
which is what the Stations are meant to represent)

Jesus stood firm in the face of accusation, condemnation.
He didn’t lash out. He didn’t back down.
He stood His ground,
exemplifying what He taught about turning the other cheek,
giving your cloak and tunic, going the extra mile.
He’s trustworthy.
He means what He says.
He doesn’t change with the tide of public opinion.
You can count on Him.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

2nd Station: Jesus takes up His Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Jesus doesn’t make idle threats.
He knows the consequences of His choices
and is fully prepared to embrace them,
to follow through for our sake.
He has courted the cross.
Now He embraces its weight.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

3rd Station: Jesus falls the first time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

God doesn’t limit Himself to success.
It’s much easier to only take on things you know you can handle,
things over which you have control.
God takes on all sinners,
knowing that with some He will fail–
they will cast themselves into hell
despite all His efforts to rescue them.
He could just leave them to their own devices,
but He doesn’t.
He gives them the freedom to make a failure of Him.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

4th Station: Jesus meets His mother
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Those who love
suffer when their loved ones see them suffer.
Jesus knew His suffering would redound on His Blessed mother,
and it broke His Heart to put her through that,
but He would not let Himself be blackmailed by that suffering either.
He would be true as an arrow, come what may.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

5th Station: Simon of Cyrene is forced to help Jesus carry the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

The suffering continues to rebound on others.
Mary was willing.
Simon was not.
Blame pressed upon the Just One-
“See how Your stubbornness is causing all these people to suffer?
Are You proud of Yourself for instigating all this oppression and pain?!
You’ve got to back down now, You cad!”
But Jesus can see higher and deeper than this.
He knows the price of capitulation
-for all involved-
and the rewards of redemption.
He will not be swayed.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

6th Station: Veronica wipes the Face of Jesus
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

We’ve seen what God will not give
-He won’t change truth to suit our desires-
but that doesn’t mean His hands are closed.
Quite the contrary.
To those open to receive
He gives more than we could ask or imagine-
His very self.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

7th Station: Jesus falls a second time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

“Souls are falling into hell like snowflakes” (message of Fatima)
Souls are falling, falling, falling into sin.
While there’s life, there’s hope-we can repent and go on.
But we are not guaranteed another breath.
The falls of Jesus cry urgently:
“Repent and be saved!”

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

8th Station: Jesus meets the weeping women of Jerusalem
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It’s stressful to deal with weeping women,
with those whose reason is clouded by emotional distress,
but our Savior wades right in and speaks truth.
He redirects their distress toward a constructive end:
“Weep for yourselves and for your children!”

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

9th Station: Jesus falls a third time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

[The man of faith] has no trouble
subordinating all his projects and hopes
to the unfathomable designs
of a God who often uses failure even better than success
to bring about the good of souls.
– Dom Jean-Baptiste Chautard, O.C.S.O.
The Soul of the Apostolate

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

10th Station: Jesus is stripped of His garments
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Stripped-of everything.
Every shred of human dignity, of respect, of honor, torn away.
Nothing left but base contempt and condemnation.
Still He remains faithful,
for He cannot, will not deny Himself.
You can’t change Truth
(thank God!)

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

11th Station: Jesus is crucified
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It’s amazing how far man is capable of going
-how far I am capable of going-
with passions unchecked.
To dare to crucify God!
But surely God wouldn’t let Himself be crucified (would He?!)
-must be an imposter (so we’re justified in crucifying Him).
How abysmally we underestimate the power of God.
How tragically we apply to Him our own vices,
He Whose weakness so far surpasses our greatest power;
Whose folly surpasses our most sublime wisdom.
Holy is the Lord!

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

12th Station: Jesus dies on the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It is His generosity that resists our greed,
His boundless love that restrains our hostility.
He will not leave us to our own lusts.
He’s dying to deliver us from ourselves.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

13th Station: Jesus is taken down from the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Divine strength is made perfect in weakness,
in dependence on others to empty the cross of its precious load.
God shares the credit as He shares the crime.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

14th Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

He’s done His part.
He’s shown the way.
It’s up to us now-with Him living within us,
equipping us to do what He has done.
There are things worth dying for…
principally SOULS.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

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