Station 5

Jesus is Given His Cross


“Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.”

John 3: 14-15


If you could remove some aspect of your life, what would it be?

What is the least favorite aspect of yourself?

What do you think Jesus’ face looked like when he was given his cross?


I find “taking up your cross daily” a very mysterious statement.

It may be that Jesus is asking us to carry an actual executional device every day for the rest of our lives… and lord knows there are those that love the necessity for self-loathing and self-flagellation that certain interpretations of this sacred text provide.

I would say that if your particular religion needs a consistent dose of self-loathing to function, maybe ask yourself “Is this really good news?”

But maybe Jesus is referring to something a little more metaphorical, yet still something so very real.

I think one our greatest fear as humans is the potential of something happening to us that we are not in charge of. Something devastating. Some kind of loss. Something horrible given to us whether we like it or not. Something that gets us in touch with our powerlessness…. Which is a fear always hiding behind the veneer of control and curated toughness.

Jesus partook in being given something that he did not want.

Maybe our offering today, and every day, is to practice the acceptance of that which I cannot control.

That which will happen in a human life…

Wrinkles. Infection. Swelling. Exhaustion. Brokenheartness. Weeping.

It is the invitation to our vulnerabilities – an invitation to our relationship to our weaknesses and limitations.

Actually something quite powerful occurs when we accept what we are given. Jesus said it like this: “those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the good news, will save it.”

It’s in the losing of a life, the “ego strength” life, that we find how to really live.

It’s in the losing of a false self, and living in the true self…. the self-rooted in the “God who so loves the world”, that you find you cannot lose that which is most precious. The good news that nothing can separate you from the love of God.

That’s about as far as I understand the mystery of “taking up your cross daily”. It’s still a mystery that is forming me.