Saturday 5th Week of Lent

Today we hear that Jesus has gone into hiding. John’s Gospel tells how the Sanhedrin was convened and decided to have Jesus killed. So, Jesus needs some time to gather his strength before his ordeal commences. We take time to prepare for any major event in our lives. And Jesus has his disciples with him just as we would surround ourselves with loved ones. In the reading from Ezekiel, God promises to gather all the children of Israel together under one shepherd. The psalm reiterates the same theme. This is a tall task that Jesus is about to undertake. He will stretch out his arms, be nailed to a cross, and gather all to himself—the Good Shepherd. As I stand and contemplate the salvific act of Jesus, do I feel that I’ve been gathered into his arms? Do I feel cherished by the Good Shepherd? When I’m faced with an upcoming ordeal, do I seek strength in the ONE truest friend? Where has my Lenten journey led me? Holy Week starts tomorrow—am I ready to walk these final few days with Jesus?  Maybe today I should take time to gather my strength in quiet prayer, so I can feel gathered by Jesus as I stand under the cross on Good Friday. Photo credit: Maria Marganingsih

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