Here I sit once again, trying to sort out the
That nagging feeling has been chewing away at me,
little by little, piece by piece, until nothing is left but raw, irritated nerves.
As always, I cry out to my Savior, my Lord, my
tired, with desperation in my voice:
"Jesus, I can't take this lonely road
again. I've walked it
so many times before yet it leads me nowhere . . . ."
I swallowed the words but the thoughts numbed my brain
as they drudged on unharnessed. . . . .
nowhere but to the end of my emotions --
to the void; that immense gulf of painfully cold blackness.
"My child," He called softly.
"Yes, Lord . . . ?"
"How is it that you still don't
His voice was warm and deep.
"Lift your eyes to Mine."
And with that He gently placed His hand beneath my chin
and brought my face opposite His.
Looking into His eyes I saw something I'd never seen before.
There, a single tear swelled and spilled over His dark lashes
and down His smooth olive skin. First one, then another.
His heart was breaking for me.
I lifted my hand to wipe the tears from His cheek,
pausing to caress the precious face of my Jesus.
Then He took my hand gently into His own.
I winced as my fingers touched the scar.
He cupped His other hand over mine and
with a pat of reassurance, in that same soothing voice, said,
"Follow Me. There is nothing to fear."
With that He let go of my hand and turned and
There before Him I saw that road --
just as I'd always seen it before.
But this time, Jesus walked ahead of me.
I knew I had to follow.
The road was long and winding. It was narrow and rocky.
The incline sharp and steady. My feet were heavy and each step
became harder to take. I slowed to a crawl, but Jesus kept
His pace and soon was far ahead of me, out of sight.
It seemed as though hours had passed as I
neared the end
of the road. But my heart was full of anticipation.
I knew my Lord would be waiting for me, arms opened wide, just around
the next corner. I wouldn't have to face the void alone this time.
Filthy, exhausted and out of breath I finally
reached the end.
As I rounded the last corner I couldn't believe my eyes.
Shocked and horrified a cry of agony filled my lungs as I fell to my knees . . . .
There before me hung my precious Jesus,
once again nailed upon the tree.
His skin hung in ribbons.
Blood flowed freely down
that smooth olive face as the thorns
dug deep into His skull.
There at the foot of the cross I wept,
and once again I looked into His face.
"Why?" I asked Him pleadingly.
"Why did You do this for me?"
He pushed Himself up on the nail in
and gasped a reply I didn't expect.
"The question, -- My child, is not why, but
What will you do with Me now?"
"I don't know what You
"What choices do I have?"
Then there appeared next to me a large
filled with a lifetime of atrocities. The stench was sickening,
more hideous than anything I'd ever experienced before.
It was all I could do not to wretch at the sight of it.
I looked again to the mutilated figure
on the cross and,
shaking my head, I pleaded, "I just don't understand."
Again He put all His weight on His
feet and spoke in painful gasps.
"Throw it on Me."
"No!" I screamed.
I don't understand, my Lord . . . please help me understand!"
I continued frantically.
"You've already taken my sins, why must You do
"These aren't your sins , My
but the sins of the ones you seek."
"You mean, the ones who hurt me .
. . ," I
It was more of a statement than a question.
"But You've already taken their sins too;
why must You do this again?"
"My precious child," He
"Each time you seek them out you drive the nails
into Me all over again.
Until you let go of the past, until you forgive them,
I will hang here suspended in agony."
With that I grabbed the bucket and
flung it as hard
as I could away from my Savior into the void
beyond the cross. Then I threw myself at the foot of that tree.
There I clung with all my might, sobbing uncontrollably.
"I forgive them," I cried. "I forgive
An angel came at that moment and
released my sweet
Jesus and the two of them soon disappeared from view.
I released my painful grip of the cross and pulled myself to my feet.
I looked at my own hands and forearms,
and again I gazed in astonishment.
There, deeply embedded in my hands and arms,
were splinters from the cross.
As I pulled each of the shards from my own soft white flesh,
the wounds immediately began to heal.
Then, in a moment, the blackness of the void was overtaken
by the glorious light of the Son of God.
I was free!
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