Mass Reading & Meditation for March 27, 2013
Meditation: Isaiah 50:4-9
Wednesday of Holy Week
I gave my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who plucked my beard. (Isaiah 50:6)
Reading this one verse during Holy Week, we can be struck by how much it reminds us of Jesus’ passion. But imagine what Jesus must have felt when he heard these words. He must have realized at some point that they referred not only to the ancient prophet but to him. Do you think it struck him with terror? Or perhaps because he was the Son of God, it didn’t bother him at all.
The truth probably lies somewhere in between these two extremes. Being human, Jesus naturally experienced great distress about what was waiting for him. But then in his divinity, he could echo the Hebrew Scriptures with complete confidence: “The Lord God is my help, therefore I am not disgraced” (Isaiah 50:7). So while he certainly felt great apprehension over the ordeal that lay ahead of him, he also found strength knowing that his Father was with him and would never abandon him.
There’s a parallel here to our lives. We can’t see into the future, but we do know that we all have our own share of hardships to deal with. It could be major, like the death of a loved one, or relatively minor, like being stuck in a traffic jam for three hours. The magnitude of the challenge is not as important as how we deal with it. We can either fret about it or try our best to place it in the Father’s hands, as Jesus did.
Know that in surrendering your hardships to God, you can expect to do more than just endure them. You will find new confidence, knowing that Easter Sunday will come for you just as it did for Jesus. You know the end of the story! You will find strength in the knowledge that “all things work for good for those who love God” (Romans 8:28). Jesus didn’t come to add to your burdens. He came to carry them with you. He came to make them light. Remember: he walked the road to Calvary precisely so that he could walk with you today!
“Lord, I believe in you. I trust that you will keep me in perfect peace as I meditate on all that you have done for me.”
Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34; Matthew 26:14-25