I DREAD THE CROSS OF CHRIST
By Felix Abrahams Obi
(Written on 4th December, 2003 in Lagos)
As we gear up to celebrate Easter, I would like us to ponder a little over some issues. Does it not strike us that the frenzy of Christmas is not matched by the seeming lack luster appeal of Easter? There seem to be no bonanzas and sales. Yet Easter is one of the most hallowed of Christian traditions. Save for the more traditional Christian churches that observe the 40-day Lenten season, most Evangelical, Pentecostal and Charismatic Christian believers hardly approach Easter with much reverence. Not many stop to ponder the agonies that Jesus Christ went through to bring us salvation and redemption. The Roman Catholics relive the passions of the Christ through the weekly observation of The Stations of the Cross, and little wonder Mel Gibson, a Catholic was able to produce the award-winning Passions of the Christ which impacted most Christians worldwide! I cant remember why I thought about the Cross of Christ some 5 years ago, and hope this will stir you to ponder about Christ this season too.
Below is an excerpt from my devotional journal of December 4, in 2003 titled, I DREAD THE CROSS OF CHRIST.
I have considered and thought deeply about the cross, and am gripped with fear and dread for it. How can I walk all alone, the way to Golgotha only to have the Rugged Cross as my only companion amidst the jeers and scornful looks of the mocking crowd and bystanders?
I dread those jagged nails that tore through your palms and bored through your feet. Can I ever bear the piercing arrow on my side like you did? But you said I should carry my cross and follow you in hot pursuit to Calvary but can I ever love you deeply without the over bearing cross staring rudely at my dream and goals?
I dread to crucify myself, my dreams, my lofty aspirations and goals. How do I bear the pain and disappointment of nursing a still-hope and lost dreams born and weaned by myself? I hear the nails cry as the Roman soldiers hammers pound their heads into your (My saviors) arms and legs, and I cringe in fear; for if my master was not spared the horror of the cross, how be it me?
Let not my dread keep me from the cross of your will for my life. Help me walk and trudge up the hill of crucifixion, with the cross as my only companion. Carry me and uphold me through the path of the cross. And when I reach Golgotha, do not desert me like your Father seemingly did to you that dark and lonely Friday. Bear me through the pain of surrendering to the scorching flames of the Altar of Total Surrender to your will and your ways.
I long to die your kind of death, so I can live your kind of life. I long to experience that glory of yours, only if you can help me suffer what is bound to bring me into your glory. If I must the way of the cross tread, then take me through it by your very hands, else Ill drop out and fall away, and off the cliff of Calvary to my utter doom.
I yearn for that glory of your presence much more than I can say with words. Stir my heart as your voice goes through the ends of the earth, to call up those that yearn and long for your presence. I want to be among those that bring pleasure to your heart!