Tag Archives: the cross

Remembrance and Maundy Thursday 

Remembrance and Maundy Thursday 

Maundy Thursday we remember the last supper. As evening rests on the setting of the sun this day, I am mindful of grace. A ready and underserved favor that cost Jesus everything. 

Among those He loved so faithfully, even facing the cross, He so unselfishly cared for every heart reclined at that table.

Humility- as recorded in John’s gospel, on His last night before His betrayal and arrest, Jesus washed the feet of His disciples and then gave them a new commandment to love one another as He had loved them (John 13:34) 

For our Lord and Savior to take up the position of servant overwhelms me and in heart I truly long to never let him down. 

Yet in brokenness, I am that sinner. This small life born broken cannot comprehend HIS body broken for me. HIS blood shed for me. The precious lamb of God who came to take away the sin of the world for me. 

1 Corinthians 11 has played over and over in my heart today with verses 23-26 taking me into that very room with His beloved. I find myself with a hovering view peering into the sacred place where grace will be known so very real.

As I imagine the depths from which Paul writes, my heart bows low and although this sinners heart has been brought back into a right relationship with God, my it aches as I remember afresh my faith walk and wish there had been another way. 

“Let me go over with you again exactly what goes on in the Lord’s Supper and why it is so centrally important. I received my instructions from the Master himself and passed them on to you. The Master, Jesus, on the night of his betrayal, took bread. Having given thanks, he broke it and said,

This is my body, broken for you. Do this to remember me. After supper, he did the same thing with the cup: This cup is my blood, my new covenant with you. Each time you drink this cup, remember me. What you must solemnly realize is that every time you eat this bread and every time you drink this cup, you reenact in your words and actions the death of the Master. You will be drawn back to this meal again and again until the Master returns. You must never let familiarity breed contempt.” 1 Corinthians 11:23-26

Familiarity. This day set aside for a focused remembrance casts a shadow on ever becoming so familiar with what lie ahead for Jesus.

Paul continues and leaves no doubt in our hearts that we……

Maundy Thursday was a night most pressing on the heart of God that we NEVER forget what Jesus has done for us.

In closing, Paul continues in 1 Corinthians full well knowing the divisions among the people and without holding back he writes.

“Anyone who eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Master irreverently is like part of the crowd that jeered and spit on him at his death. Is that the kind of “remembrance” you want to be part of? Examine your motives, test your heart, come to this meal in holy awe.”
                             Holy Awe

It is quiet now on this beautiful spring evening. Life is alive all around me from my porch swing view. Bird’s singing. Flowers are popping up from the winter’s ground and somehow the leaves on the tree unfurled almost overnight. The fragrance of spring onions, hyacinths and tulips fill my head with spring joy and the promise of all things new.

So as with God, Easter is coming. 
The cross. The horrible death between two thieves. The burial. The resurrection. Rejoicing.

Jesus will not stay in the grave but will rise and bring hope and beauty to a broken people. 

We remember this Maundy Thursday and we hold on to the promise of the resurrection and to our God and King who never gave up on His beloved creation. 

At this day’s end…..

I give thanks for the sacred pause of remembering today. Thank you Jesus for making all things well with my soul.

Reflection: Befriend: Create Belonging in an Age of Judgment, Isolation, and Fear


“With Jesus, preemptive declarations of grace and love and no-condemnation establish the environment for conversations about truth, morality, and ethics. It can be no other way.” 
Author Scott Saul Befriend: Create Belonging in an Age of Judgment, Isolation, and Fear

I love a quiet afternoon with Ann VosKamp and her front porch guests. 
Today’s post by Pastor Saul stopped me in my tracks for a bit of soul-searching of my own. 
Ann VosKamp is wise. How do I know? She has learned to sit at the feet of those who know the transforming love and grace of God so very well that they are compelled to proclaim the good and glory of God. 
Shoutin’ glory as it relates to their very own honest view of the not so pretty, imperfect, real and messy business of life. You know the life that faces the world head-on in pursuit of the real meaning to it all? 
The truth of it is that some of us find the real Jesus for life sooner rather than later and that is a blessing. For others, it takes years of pain, heartache and struggle until they know the surrender of the arms of an all loving God.
The following excerpt toward the end of the powerfully convicting post by Pastor Scott Saul caused me to consider how many times I may have inadvertently offered my judgement in word and action far more quickly than love and grace. 
Grace, a ready favor. Love so undeserved. The free gift of eternal life. I know more now why my grandmother spent her days living, breathing and singing sweet hymns of the promise of heaven. 

“After eighteen years of pastoral ministry, I have never met a person who fell in love with Jesus because a Christian scolded them about their morality or their ethics. Have you?”

In the end, the following words of Anne Lamott hang hauntingly over me and I have mulled them over and over for hours.
“It’s okay to realize that you’re crazy and very damaged. All the best people are.
Grace and love must come before ethics.
No-condemnation must come before the morality discussion.

Because it is God’s kindness that leads to repentance, not our repentance that leads God to be kind.

Love – the broad embrace of the narrow path – will trigger some of the most life-giving experiences you’ll ever be part of.

I have known my own life-giving experiences and have been so grateful for love in action, grace expressed among the people of God who held me, never uttered a word and cried WITH me.
There is so much pain in this world. Pain that makes your heart feel as if it could explode at any moment and is only diffused when the eyes of compassion that look right back at you. Truth. Inthat very  moment of need, the eyes of love  and grace knows! There is no more peaceful place than the soul deep affirmation that you are loved and in that breath no words are needed. 
Not. One. Word. 
So where does that kind of love begin and grace abound?

“We must first realize that LOVE is the environment that we ourselves are already living inside of. 

Love has to be a Person to us before it can become a verb.” Scott Saul

At this day’s end…….. 
This small heart is overcome by God’s love that wraps me all up tight and swells over my life such palpable grace. 
Where DOES that kind of love begin and grace extend?
In and through me….
In and through you…..
Grace and love speak louder than words. ALWAYS!
Lord, keep me mindful of the your extreme love and grace extended to me. May my habit of love and grace’s response be exponentially the same on even the hardest days. 
When I am wrangling my own demons write love and grace in my heart. For all of my days; the good, challenging, when I don’t feel well, knees are swollen, head is aching, have worked hard on the sweatiest, coldest, draining, did not sleep well last night, aggravated, in need of heart rest and self care, backbreaking and enduring days.
And yes Lord, may we walk humbly in the love and grace that responds because of our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. May our heavenly minded action respond as an outpouring of love and grace extended… 
May all that we know intellectually be true, honest and authentic as our lives speak of who God is- 
We love because God first loved us!
May our anthem cry be that of our view toward heaven and the level ground at the foot of the cross…..

Come ye sinners, poor and needy. 

Weak and wounded, sick and sore. 

Jesus, ready, stands to save you. 

Full of pity,  joined with power…

Let not conscience make you linger

 Nor of fitness fondly dream.

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