Rev. Carolyn Stephens
It was in that same love that Jesus preached the good news of the gospel – the gift of salvation to all, and eternal life. It was in that love Jesus healed the sick and the wounded, and offered rest to the weary and burdened. In that love, he loved the unlovable, and touched the untouchable. And it was in that same love, Jesus willingly entered the arena of human suffering, even to the point of laying down his life.
God of power and might, we know you could have left us to our own destructive ways, but you chose to be incarnate Love. We know Jesus Christ could have turned away from the path of pain and suffering. And we know he could have called ten thousand angels to set him free.
Yet, he set his face like flint and went on to Jerusalem, where he would be betrayed, mocked, beaten, and crucified. He knew what awaited him, yet he was willing to enter the arena.
Gracious and compassionate God, as we enter into this Holy Week, give us the boldness to follow into the footsteps of Jesus Christ. Give us the courage to take up our cross and follow him. Give us the heart to love each other as you love us. Give us the grace to forgive as you have forgiven us. And give us the strength to carry on to the end.
All this we pray through Christ, our Lord. Amen!