Wednesday, March 10, 2021

The days are surely coming when they will say, “Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.” Then they will begin to say to the mountains, “Fall on us”; and to the hills, “Cover us.” For if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?’ (Luke 23:29-31)

The only hope

These are strange and bitter words. Jesus looks ahead, seeing a time when blood will run deep in the streets he now walks to his death.

And so it was. Several decades after his crucifixion Roman forces surrounded Jerusalem permitting no one to enter or leave, starving the population. Breaching the walls, they unleashed merciless rage on everyone in sight, young and old, until the streets were obstructed with the bodies of more than 100,000 killed, carrying away as many others as slaves.

Jesus had brought the promise of spring to those streets. His words and mercy awakened hope and peace in open hearts. The clay of their souls sprang to life like willow branches greening in an April sun as they listened to him.

But the time of his presence on Jerusalem streets passed. Soon, the bitterness of life beneath the heel of Roman boots ignited the tinderbox of smoldering animosity, and it exploded in rebellion and an orgy of bloodlust.

It begs the question of whether there is any hope for the human race because this pattern of oppression, resistance and retribution keeps repeating itself throughout history.

The only way to break the cycle, it seems, is to follow the one carrying the cross, the one who refuses to hate even those who hate him.

Pr. David L. Miller

We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.

By your holy cross you have redeemed the world.