As we approach Holy Week, I often contemplate how difficult it might have been for Jesus to carry out God’s will. Ultimately, it is surpassed by realising his death and resurrection were the fulfilment of his mission. Furthermore, what is most compelling to me during Holy Week is that despite what Jesus is going through he is always thinking of others.
In Matthew 26:17-35, Jesus prepares the Passover Meal for his disciples knowing that this will be the last meal he will share with them. There must have been conflicting emotions going through his mind as he sat down to eat knowing one of his disciples, Judas, was going to betray him and another disciple, Peter would deny him three times. Yet he ate, drank and broke bread together with them all. Jesus does not discriminate or judge but still includes them in his final meal. It causes me to reflect on how many times I have excluded others because of a breakdown in my relationships with them.
The story continues, when Jesus was brought before Pilate accused of false charges, he did not defend himself but remained silent. “But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.” Matthew 27:14 Jesus’ eyes were fixed on doing God’s will, not his own personal self-aggrandisement. Thus, it makes me think how often do I lash out when I feel aggrieved instead of maintaining self-control and looking at the bigger picture.
Furthermore, Jesus while nailed to the cross and struggling with pain looks to his followers in the distance. Matthew 27:55 This made me realise how frequently our family and friends are there for me in the most challenging times which I believe extols upon me to show my appreciation and recognise their kindness.
Holy Week concludes with Jesus’ resurrection, John 20:1-31. The fulfilment of the scriptures occurs when Jesus appears to Mary Magdalene. John: 20:15. Jesus’ selfless act of dying on the cross culminates in his glorious resurrection which enables everyone to enter God’s Kingdom and experience eternal life. “I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” John 10:28-30
This inspires me to think how many things am I willing to sacrifice or let go to bring about change to a difficult situation because it is only then that I can see beyond the issue and glimpse with hope into the future. This can only be achieved if I think of others before myself just like Jesus did in his death and resurrection.