Gosh, it’s a hard road!
I’ve never really seen it before – just how much Jesus’s story is our story, or should I say Jesus joins us in our story. In Matthew’s Gospel we see Jesus getting baptized, the Holy Spirit descending on Him like a dove, and his loving Father saying over Him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy!” It must have been wonderful! And then the same Spirit pitches him out into the wilderness, the desert, for 40 days of fasting and (tougher still) testing by temptation. We know how tested we are as human beings, and evil prevails so often, everywhere.
The temptation is there, the fruit looks delicious, excuses of all sorts are made, and we take the road God said we should not take. It is the human story over and over again. And Jesus is pitched right into it, headlong. He joins us in our story, in spades. And yet…..Jesus does not give in. He takes the power of His Father’s Word and sticks to His Father’s way. Why does it have to be so hard? Christians around the world discover this as they seek to join in Jesus’s story and go the Way of His loving Father – often against the odds. But – Glory be! – the angels came and took care of Him. Going the Father’s way is the only way we will find the true heart of love – it is the Way of truth, of peace, of true power indeed – the power that in the end raised Christ from the dead. Let us tread the road this with Jesus this Lent & Easter, and beyond, so His story may become our story.