When the soldiers had crucified Jesus they took his garments and made four parts, one for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was without seam, woven from top to bottom;
~John 19:23 (RSVCE)
The tenth station of the cross reveals to us two aspects: Firstly, about our relationship with God and secondly with our brothers and sisters. Jesus was stripped of His garments so that He would die possessing nothing and so as followers of Christ we are called to strip ourselves of any evil desires or sinful inclinations that come between us and God. Many times, we tend to be like those soldiers to our brothers and sisters. We strip them with our words, gestures and expressions. We give opportunities to disgrace them. Just as Noah’s son, Ham on looking at his drunk and naked father went out and told his two brothers, Shem and Japheth they came in and clothed their father, keeping their faces turned away so that he would not be ashamed. In a similar way, let us try to protect our neighbours from being stripped off their dignity as a child of God even if we have been hurt by them.
Lord, I thank you for taking upon yourself the sufferings of my sins. Just as you were stripped of your garments, strip me from the love for earthly things even if it is a painful process. Reveal to me all those times when I unintentionally, am exposing the weaknesses of my brothers and sisters. Pour your grace and fill me with your love and faith so that I may not judge looking at their weaknesses but pray for them. Amen.
Not long ago, I felt constantly hurt by a person I was very fond of. Some of her actions wounded my affection for her and I was soon filled with unforgiveness/hatred towards her. I left no opportunity to grumble about her ways. Little did I know that this was not only spoiling my relationship with her but was also spoiling my relationship with God and others around me. It was only when I asked for God’s grace did He give me a verse which says, ‘love covers all offences’. It then struck me that if I was actually fond of that person I wouldn’t have spoken or judged her by her behaviour. Today by God’s grace I am able to love her and not disgrace her even when moments of disagreement creep in.
- What is that one sin that is coming between me and my Father?
- I will pray 3 Hail Mary’s every time I am tempted, reminding myself that love covers all offences (Proverbs 10:12)
- I will ask for God’s forgiveness and apologize to the people whom the Holy Spirit reminds me off.