Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Staff (01/31/13)
TITLE: My Father's Staff
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My thoughts turn gradually to another Man, appearing weak and broken, nearly spent. Surrounded by soldiers, “They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him and mocked him. ‘Hail, king of the Jews!’ they said. They spit on him and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again,” (Matthew 27:28-30, NIV). How my heart would shatter if my earthly father were treated such! As I glimpse him, walking alone in the distance, my eyes fill with tears at the thought. How often have I neglected, not appreciated, the man?
And yet, how much more have I failed to appreciate what was done for me by the Son of my Heavenly Father? How much more have I overlooked the staff used to strike him on the head again and again? When have I considered this instrument of authority and kingship delivering blow after blow to the King himself? How few times have my eyes filled with tears upon recollection of his suffering on my behalf?
As my own father turns and begins his journey back toward home, I reconsider the weakness I see symbolized in his staff. Christ’s staff was not a sign of his weakness, but his strength; the strength of his love, his commitment, his devotion, and his kingdom. Likewise, my father’s staff is not a sign of his weakness, but a sign of Christ’s love and kingdom. Before long, this aging believer will be in the presence of the One who redeemed him, who has sustained him, and who has gone ahead to prepare a place for him. Upon leaving this existence he will enter into one far more glorious, one in which he will no longer need his staff for walking. And then he will finally be home.
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