Friday, February 25, 2011

Sorrowful Mysteries, 4th, The LORD Carries His Cross

John 19:16-17
Then he handed him over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus,
and carrying the cross himself he went out to what is called the Place of the Skull, in Hebrew, Golgotha.


In the 4th Sorrowful Mystery we pray for the grace to bear our trials with patients.

The 4th Sorrowful Mystery has, as I find many times, obliterated what I thought was just a cliche and through the contemplation of this mystery I have seen the truth in the old saying "everyone has their cross to bear".

First of all I am brought back to Mark 8:34 where our LORD says "Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me." As a Christian my only goal in life should be to be a disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ. In order to do that I don't need a bunch of stuff. My goal shouldn't be a better job, a bigger house, a "picture perfect" family. If I somehow end up with these things, then so be it. But my purpose should be to be a disciple. To be a disciple, I don't need an easy life. What I need is my cross.

However, in this life the LORD has blessed me tremendously. I have a good job. I have a decent house and cars that run. I have a little money in the bank. I don't want for food. If someone gets sick we go to the doctor. I could go on and on with the good things that the LORD my GOD has blessed me with. But that is not the point of this particular post.

My blessings are many, so even if I am willing to seek out my cross, I sometimes have a hard time finding it because I have it so good. so I pray
LORD, I want to be your disciple. You have blessed me abundantly and I do not see my Cross. Jesus, Son of David, Have pity on me(Luke 18:38). Let me see(my cross).

This is a scary thing to pray. The fact is, I want to be a good disciple and carry my cross as Christ carried His. But, I fear that when He does show me my cross, I will lack the courage to pick it up (the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak Mathew 26:41). So I pray, LORD strengthen me and grant me the courage to pick up my cross.

But, I know that even if I see my cross and even if the LORD gives me the courage to pick it up and carry it that I cannot carry it by myself (because without me you can do nothing. John 15:5). So I pray, Help me, LORD I cannot carry this cross by myself. I am too weak.

Far from being cliche the Cross is central to the Christian life. A lesson I have learned meditating on the 4th Sorrowful Mystery is that my focus in life should be to be a disciple of Our LORD. To be a disciple I must pick up my cross and follow Him. If I don't see my Cross then I need to pray that GOD will grant me sight. That if I fear The Cross, I should pray for the grace to embrace my Cross. Finally, that I will not carry The Cross on only on my own shoulders but if I ask, the LORD will help me under the weight of The Cross.

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