My Son, did it have to happen in this way? The echoes of the nails ring in my ears and the sight of soldiers casting lots for your clothes pains me. My heart truly is pierced with each rip from the nails that you endure. Each clank of the hammer to the nails is a deeper pain within my heart. Yet, I wait for the promise. I ponder the words of Gabriel. Through my tear blurred eyes I try to see the plan. I trust the Lord. I trust the promises.
Simeon warned me. Throughout the years as you grew, I wondered, I pondered, I prayed about how his words would apply to me. What did he mean? “And you yourself a sword will pierce” (Luke 2:35). Now, I see. The vicious sword of death, sacrifice, suffering, forgiveness, redemption, and salvation pierces to a level I never knew existed. Is there no other way? Why does it have to be this horrific? Oh, my Son, why do they hate you so much? They have despised you from the moment of your birth.
“And when they came to a place called Golgotha (which means Place of the Skull), they gave Jesus wine to drink mixed with gall. But when he had tasted it, he refused to drink. After they had crucified him, they divided his garments by casting lots: then they sat down and kept watch over him there.” (Matthew 27: 33-36)
“Two revolutionaries were crucified with him, one on his right and the other on his left. Those passing by reviled him, shaking their heads and saying, ‘You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself, if you are the Son of God, and come down from the cross. Likewise, the chief priests with the scribes and elders mocked him and said, ‘He saved others; he cannot save himself. So, he is the king of Israel! Let him come down from the cross now, and we will believe in him. He trusted in God; let him deliver him now if he wants him.” (Matthew 27:38-43)
Son, I want to reach out and bandage your wounds. I want to stop the hammer. Despite my heart’s desire I surrender to the Lord’s plan. My knees get weak as I remember your first words. The first words you spoke. How loving your voice was and how compassionate even as a child. Now, facing brutality indescribable, your voice, although wounded and weak, still full of compassion and love. You call them “daughters of Jerusalem,” but you call me “mother.” They call you “criminal”, “Lord”, “Messiah”, and “King”. I call you “son”.
My tears fall and water the earth beneath me, but they are not tears of despair. These are your mother’s tears of love. These are the tears shed as the life I bore in that Bethlehem cave is now bearing new life for the entire world on a hilltop. The tears of joy flowing down my cheeks in Bethlehem have now turned to tears of a mother’s shattered heart. Yet, I remain silent. I ponder how all of this will end. I trust you, my son. I love you.