Between two criminals, a mocking title above his head, with only Mary and John and Mary Magdalene to support him, Jesus surrenders his last breath:  "Into your hands I commend my spirit."
I stand there, at the foot of the cross, side by side with all of humanity, and behold our salvation.

I carefully watch and listen to all that is said.

And then, I experience the one who gives life pass from life to death, for me.  I console Mary and John and Mary.  And let them console me.

This is the hour to express the deepest feelings within me.

V. We adore you, O Christ, and we praise you;

R. Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

From Mark chapter 15 vs 37:

Then Jesus uttering a loud cry, breathed His last.

When it comes to our turn to die, let us meet death as Jesus did, trusting in God for deliverance. Having suffered with Christ, and dying with Him, we shall rise to reign with Him forever.

Dear Lord, while our families choose to follow you on your way to the cross, we know that someday you will deliver us from the sufferings of this world. When that time of death comes close, please help us to remember that ‘death’ is only the entrance to our new life with you. Save us then from the distractions of the evil one, and help us to know that we are so close to experiencing your loving embrace. We love you Jesus.

 

"When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, "Woman, behold, your son!" Then he said to the disciple, "Behold, your mother!" And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home. After this Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the scripture), "I thirst." (St. John 19.26-28.)

Let us pray:

O, my Jesus, in this mirror I see reflected the incomprehensible icon of your great love for me. Through the Incarnation you emptied yourself of your Divinity to assume the flesh and blood of man — and as though this outpouring were not enough, that life you assumed now pours forth from you, a libation in blood, as you empty yourself once again ... now surrendering your humanity in blood to the darkness of death.

You have given all. Your Divinity and your humanity  — and both, that we may share in your life as God! Surrendering both, you were poured out utterly — that we may come to the fullness of life through your death. Utter desolation. Utter abandonment. The total dereliction of God and Man in the God made Man.

It is not taken from you. You surrender it. It is yours to surrender, and it is yours to take up again! For all our evil devices we have taken nothing from you but what you willingly surrender, and because it was not in our power to take, it is not in our power to restore. We are not gods after all ... not by us, but for our sake, all has now been accomplished. By our malice, our sin, have we brought you to this death — but not by our power. Your meekness has vanquished the might of all men!

In dying you overthrew death itself!

It is no more.

O, Jesus, grant me the grace to give myself totally to you for the sake of your love.

Behold, my Lord and my God, from this moment hence I surrender to you all that I am, all that I have! Beyond the scandal of the Cross on this hill of the skull, even now I behold a gathering light and it reveals endless fields that are yet white to harvest! You have come in your going. I go, too, with you ... so now, Lord ... send me ...!

 

Meditation: 

As Jesus hung on the cross, he forgave the soldiers who had crucified him, and prayed for his mother and friends. Jesus wanted all of us to be able to live forever with God, so he gave all he had for us.

Jesus, let me take a few moments now to consider your love for me. Help me thank you for your willingness to go to your death for me. Help me express my love for you!

My Jesus, three hours didst Thou hang in agony, and then die for me; let me die before I sin, and if I live, live for Thy love and faithful service.

Prayer

God is dead! No wonder the earth quaked, the sun hid itself, the dead rose and Mary stood by in horror. Your human body gave up it's soul in death but Your Divinity, dear Jesus, continued to manifest its power. All creation rebelled as the Word made Flesh departed from this world. Man alone was too proud to see and too stubborn to acknowledge truth.

Redemption was accomplished! Man would never have an excuse to forget how much You loved him. The thief on Your right saw something he could not explain - he saw a man on a tree and knew He was God. His need made him see his own guilt and Your innocence. The Promise of eternal life made the remaining hours of his torture. endurable. 

A common thief responded to Your love with deep Faith, Hope, and Love. He saw more than his eyes envisioned - he felt a Presence he could not explain and would not argue with. He was in need and accepted the way God designed to help him.

Forgive our pride, dear Jesus as we spend hours speculating, days arguing and often a lifetime in rejecting Your death, which is a sublime mystery. Have pity on those whose intelligence leads them to pride because they never feel the need to reach out to the Man of Sorrows for consolation.
 

May every one of us be able to cry out:
"Yesterday I was crucified with Christ,
today I am glorified with him.
Yesterday I died with him,
today I live with him.
Yesterday I was buried with him.
Today I have risen with him." (Gregory Nazianzen)

In the darkness of our nights, 
we contemplate you. 
Teach us to turn towards the Most High, 
your heavenly Father.

Today, let us pray
that all those who promote abortion 
may become aware that love 
can only be a source of life. 
Let us think also of those who defend euthanasia 
and those who encourage 
techniques and procedures 
which endanger human life. 
Open their hearts 
to know you in the truth
and to work for the building 
of the civilization of life and love. 
Amen.

1 Our Father 

1 Hail Mary 

1 Glory Be ...

O Jesus Crucified - for us you suffered - for us you died - On the Cross

Daily Meditation by(c) 2013 Don Schwager
Bible Story illustrations by publishing.com 

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