Scripture: Jesus said, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything
must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets,
and the Psalms.” John 24:44, NIV
Of all the
words of tongue or pen,
the saddest are these -”It might have
the saddest of all events is the death of someone in their youth. Their
life has not, and will never be, brought to fruition. One can not help but
to speculate what additional years may have wrought. The promises of talents
and skills, the contributions to society never realized.
Time may dim but never erase the memories, nor quell
the occasional thoughts of “what might have been.” Such are thoughts of a
brother who was lost to our family more than a half century ago at age thirteen.
Accidents, violence (including war,) and illness of
various sorts take their toll. Grief is an expression of the loss that takes
something from our very souls.
For those of us who are truly close to the Easter Passion,
knowing the final outcome does not lessen the sadness we feel as we experience
the reality of Christ’s arrest, trial, and crucifixion. We read in the Gospels
once again of the disciples scattered, the women keeping vigil near the
cross, the mockery of the crowds around Golgotha.
How long had it been since Jesus rode into Jerusalem,
to the cries of “Hosannah!?” A week? Surely much longer. A ride, and
a week, that would see prophecy fulfilled. Yet the people swirling around
that city, the events of that week, scarcely gave the past much thought. They
were caught up in the present, and the hopes for the future. Jesus was so
young, so filled with promise. Many did desire, yes, hope that this was the
ONE, the promised Messiah, the Deliverer of promise. Surely those who
followed Him to Calvary felt their very souls tear on hearing the crowds revel
in their mockery, “You saved others, now save yourself. Aren’t you
Incense and myrrh, spices and perfumes - gifts
at his birth, the anointments of last rites. A sword indeed pierced His follower’s
souls. (Luke 2:35)
Who cannot but sympathize with those two walking away
from the sorrow of Jerusalem toward Emmaus, their faces downcast. On “Good
Friday” we join them in sorrowing, “They crucified him.”
Our hopes that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel, dashed,
‘What might have been,” in our thoughts.
Because we are EASTER PEOPLE, we know the outcome.
We rejoice with those who exclaim,
“Were not our hearts burning within us . . .?”
We rejoice at what is NOT there . . . the tomb is
The saddest words have become these, of John 24:11:
“They did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like
So many lost
in the sadness of unbelief.
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