We are in the middle of Holy Week. Over the years I have come to see this week as less about all of the worship services the church provides and more about learning to journey with Jesus during this sacred time. I've moved from, “Oh man, I have to provide all these services,” and all the work that entails, to a place where I am able to fully participate in this journey. To be honest, that has also allowed me to not stress over how many (or how few) people choose to attend the various worship services. It has also helped me to not stress about whether everything is “perfect,” wherein we understand that every journey has its ups and downs, its smooth sailing and its bumpy rides.
As part of this journey, we offer Stations of the Cross every day at 12:15 (except for today when we have the regularly scheduled midweek Eucharist). This is a solemn, prayerful journey with Jesus from his trial to his burial, and there is something deeply touching about walking with Jesus as he falls three times, seeing a woman wiping his face and offering comfort, watching as his lifeless body is placed in his mother's arms, and finally seeing the body laid in a tomb.
As part of this journey we share a meal on Thursday, followed by the final Eucharist of the week and the stripping of the altar, signifying our own betrayal of Christ.
As part of this journey we form an angry mob and cry out for the crucifixion of Jesus. As part of this journey we also gather at the tomb to mourn the death of friend and teacher, wondering, “What's next?”
This week reminds us that life is a journey. It has its good times. It has its difficult times. It has its times of death and separation. And through it all, it reminds us that we live in hope of what is promised but not seen.
I hope you will find the time this week to journey with Jesus on this slow, deliberate walk through all of life's ups and downs, twists and turns. I hope that, wherever you are, you find a faith community to share in this journey. And if you are unable to spend time in worship this week, I hope you make time to prayerfully contemplate those mighty acts of Christ that will lead us to life and immortality.
May you have a blessed Holy Week and a joyful Easter.