Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Lenten Journey: Climbing to the Cross - Day THIRTY

Psalm 126 - A Song of Ascents - Today's New International Version

When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion,
   we were like those who dreamed.
Our mouths were filled with laughter,
   our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
   “The LORD has done great things for them.” 
 The LORD has done great things for us,
   and we are filled with joy.
Restore our fortunes, LORD,
   like streams in the Negev.
Those who sow with tears
   will reap with songs of joy.
Those who go out weeping,
   carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
   carrying sheaves with them. 

I love this song.

And I think it's a perfect song for climbing.

That's what it is, you know. It's a song to be sung while climbing the steep hill road to Jerusalem.

One of fifteen psalms sung at the time of each festival celebration, sung as the pilgrims returned to Zion for feasting and worshiping and remembering.

So this is a perfect song for us, at day thirty on our climb to Calvary. We're heading into the home stretch, nearer and nearer to the heart of the city and to the heart of our story.

And it's feeling like a climb about now, isn't it?

Walking along with Jesus as he takes his friends to the end of the road, as he prepares for his own exodus - we can get weary in this walking. Unsure as to whether or not we really want to make that last steep ascent up the hill.

But take heart!

We do not go alone. 

We join with hundreds and thousands and millions of others - around the world and across time. 

And we go with Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, the divine/human one who bent low that we might be brought high. 

But it's true that there is weeping along the way, isn't it? The journey we take is fraught with danger, toil and tears - no doubt about that.

But always - always - amidst the tears and the struggle, there are these kernels,  these seeds of hope. 

And we know that as those seeds are planted - we will return singing songs of joy. Yes, we will.

Yes. We. Will.


Lord of the Road - this road of life, and this road to Calvary and the empty tomb - we join our voices to the throng, to the voices of the faithful over the centuries and all around this world. And we sing of hope, of promise, of dreams, of committed connection to our story and to you, the Author of that story. Give us courage to make this final stretch; steady our feet on the rocky road and lead us into life.