Imagine for a moment, you are Jesus. You've just stood trial for the "crime" of being King of the Jews. You remain composed, knowing the truth and knowing God's plan, but horrified at the thought of being separated from God for even just a short time, in order for His will to be done.
Soldiers have tied your hands to a pillar and whipped your body repeatedly with a three-pronged whip. They've placed a crown of twisted thorns upon your head. You've been forced to carry your own heavy wooden cross on your back across a hot desert road leading to your crucifixion site.
Once there, your hands are nailed to the cross and you're left to die by suffocation because the weight of your body makes breathing far too difficult as you begin to lose strength. And then you glance at the crowd. You see her. Your mother standing there… watching…crying…
Near the cross of Jesus stood His mother, His mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw His mother there, and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, he said to His mother, "Dear woman, here is your son," and to the disciple, "Here is your mother." From that time on, this disciple took her into his home. ~John 19:25-27
The story of Jesus' crucifixion is always very heartbreaking to me. I really struggled with writing about it because I didn't want to be disrespectful of Jesus and what He had to endure for all of our sins. However, I really feel it's important (especially with Easter approaching) to speak out about His story.
Jesus suffered a brutal and painful death for you and for me. For everyone!
His story isn't just about His death though. It's also about His immeasurable love for family.
Yes, dear friend, He was a human being. He had a real beating heart. He felt the nails piercing his flesh, the blood dripping down his face, and the unbearable weight of his body crushing his ability to breathe.
Yet even while He was hanging from that cross in unbelievable pain and anguish, He still showed concern for others. He showed concern for His family! He was completely selfless in everything He did and said.
When I read the verse above, I'm reminded of not only how much Jesus loved and cared for His mother and His disciples, but also how much He loves me. Oh, how I praise Him for loving me so much!
Guess what? He loves you too!
As believers, we are a part of His family. So Jesus is always concerned for us, and He wants us to live life loving others the way God's word teaches us to.
While hanging from the cross, watching the emotion pour down his mother's face, Jesus instructed John to take care of her.
Just as He instructed John, Jesus also instructs us.
Our families are a precious gift from God, and we should value and care for them under all circumstances. No matter how busy we get with the day to day realities of life, we need to be sure our family isn't neglected.
Regardless of what type of work we do, whether working for an employer or working passionately for God, it should never take priority over caring for the needs of our loved ones. Our family has basic needs like food and shelter, but each heart beating in our home has emotional needs as well. Everyone needs to know they are loved.
Are we doing as Jesus instructed?
Are we taking time to hug our children, to listen to them, and to laugh with them?
Are we intimately loving our husband, respecting his leadership over the family, and showing him how much we appreciate all he does and who he is?
Are we spending time with God sitting in His presence, praying, listening, and worshiping Him?
How are we prioritizing our time?
Let's be challenged by this.
Today, let's walk away from work, from the computer, from doing our taxes, from spring cleaning, and from yard work. All of that can be done another day.
Today, let's give our time, our hearts, and our focus to the ones who matter. To our gifts and blessings from God. The people in our lives who need us. And let's lift our hands and our hearts to the One who loves us so much that He sacrificed His one and only Son to give us eternal life.
For God so loved the world...
And He has commanded us to love, too.
Has your husband been laid off? Is finding work proving to be more difficult than he thought it would be? This is a difficult and emotional time for you and your family. I know, because I've been there. Find encouragement in your situation by hopping over to my other website, UnEMPLOYED Faith.