Have you ever witnessed something that changed you?
There are many things about our lives that are routine—the same view out our kitchen window, the same walk to school, or the same route to work. Sometimes we don’t even remember the journey from point A to point B because it’s so familiar. But, every once in a while, something happens that interrupts our routines. Maybe it’s a glorious sunrise, causing us to pause at the kitchen window. Or maybe it’s a construction zone, forcing us to cross the street. Or maybe it’s an accident we pass, prompting us to take extra care.
In our Scripture reading, we find a scene that changed everything. Jesus is condemned to death and He takes His final steps towards the cross. He is crucified. We find His family and friends standing at the foot of the cross—Mary, His mother, Mary, the wife of Clopas, Mary Magdalene, and the disciple Jesus loved. These disciples are standing as witnesses to something unexpected—the death of their Lord. He is suffering. He is dying. And, all they can do is stand and watch.
But, is standing and watching as weak and helpless as we make it sound? Does standing as a witness change us only in the moment or does it have the power to transform the story we tell as well as our inner most being? In the midst of disbelief and grief, Jesus’ family and friends courageously witness the injustice of His death and the great love that led Him there. Their memory of Jesus is forever impacted by what they witnessed that day and it changes them.
As you stand at the foot of the cross, how does witnessing the death of Jesus change who you are and the story you have to tell?
Sherri Guenther Trautwein is Associate Pastor at Lendrum MB Church in Edmonton, AB.