So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). John 19:17 (NIV)
There He goes. The Soldiers make Him load up His cross. Jesus trudges off towards His place of death. He is marching under the weight of our sins. He is carrying the burden of all that has ever been committed against God. All the waywardness, all the selfishness that mankind has set themselves to since the world began is pressing down upon our Saviour´s shoulders. Upon His back Jesus alone must bear our treason. Although He never turned one moment from His Father, although He never once sought anything for Himself first, He accepts our blame. He finds the strength to place one foot in front of the other. He drags Himself ever nearer that rugged hill where He must die. All the legions of Heaven would rush to His assistance. The great heart of His Father is painfully crushed with the agony of what His Son must suffer. But the love is great. It is greater still than all that must be paid. Father and Son willingly step forward to experience the excruciating separation that is to take place for us to be reclaimed. What love is so great that it gives Him strength to continue! What incredible compassion Jesus displays as He makes His sacrifice for us! What weight He bears for us! What part of that weight can we still feel in our hearts when we remember Him?
What is happening to religion in our day? Where are the believers who stop to wonder? Where are the humble worshippers who cry out with the pain they feel for what Christ had to pay for them? Who amongst us aches inside and is moved by what they feel? Who today goes running to their knees? Who seeks a quiet place to be alone with the One Who died for them? Who of us still presses their faces to the ground and lets their tears fall for what Jesus had to suffer for us?
Are we so wrapped up in all the blessings that are promised to believers that we forget to think of the price? Have we jumped past the weight of sin? Have we skipped by the heaviness and pain we cause when we let our attention slide from Heaven something more to our liking? Have we forgotten what part we play in the suffering of our Lord? Do we prefer to congratulate ourselves on our new found hope? Are we in a hurry to run ahead to the wedding feast?
Is it possible that we might still need to remember the One we come to consider? Would it be important to step in behind Him through His sufferings? If we would spend the rest of eternity with the Lamb of God, might we want to get to know Him today? Should we show concern for what He experiences? Should we feel with Him His pain? Should we open our hearts to weigh all that He bears? What kind of followers will Jesus want to see by His side? Will He be content with the happy celebrating crowd that prefers to shout and dance their jubilee only on a special day each week? Or will the Lord choose to spend eternity with the kind of worshipper who knows what carrying His cross means?
It leaves us undone when we consider the weight of Your sacrifice. It pains us to know see our part in bringing suffering upon You. It agonizes us to know that You still hurt every time we fail to look to You. It is our waywardness that weighs down upon You and drives You to that hill of death. But for the love of God, that most powerful and mysterious force, You continue carrying our burden. Please let Your true children feel the weight of Your cross. Give us a burden to carry too. Let us fall in right behind You. Let us follow You towards our death to the world. Help us please become carry our cross for You we pray!