>> Sunday, March 04, 2007
For me, this particular scene is by far the most frightening of Christ's passion. It is Jesus at His most human, most vulnerable state. At this moment, I wish I could speak for us all and say "Don't do this for us! We've been so hateful, so sinful. We are so unworthy!". My inclination is to dash the cup from the Father's hands to save Jesus this pain. Why should He, who is so good, make such as sacrifice for the likes of us?
But that is precisely what the evil one would want me to do. To throw away salvation. The temptation is not only Jesus', but ours. It takes far greater strength and faith to stand by and allow Jesus to die for us. We can do as the disciples and close our eyes - as children often do when they are frightened (if I can't see what I fear, it doesn't exist). Or we can kneel beside Him and pray for the strength to carry on. To suffer temptations, humiliations, injury, to take up our crosses and drag them along until that glorious day when we, too will commend our spirits into His hands. Please, God - along the road we may meet with a Simon, to help us carry our burden, and a Veronica to offer unexpected comfort.
Father Augustine has given us this beautiful talk on Christ's Agony. May it enrich your Lenten Journey!