Have you ever had your skin pierced by a thorn?
I have. Plenty of times.
We have beautiful rose bushes that bloom in the front of our house. They grow quickly, and need to be trimmed regularly. I am always cautious and aware of the thorns, but inevitably will be stuck. At least once. Usually more.
I have had thorns lodged into my skin and usually have spots of blood on my hands when I return inside. I know gloves would help, but for whatever reason I prefer not to wear them.
Thorns are painful. They draw blood. They pierce your skin and it stings.
The last time I was trimming the rose bushes, I had a thorn go into my skin, and as I looked down and saw the trickle of blood form, my thoughts instantly turned to Jesus.
I thought of the crown of thorns they placed on His head as they beat Him, mocked Him, made Him carry His own cross, and ultimately hung Him there to die.
I thought about how painful that one prick of a thorn was for me, and my heart was completely overwhelmed.
God came down to earth as man and suffered a horrendous death for you. For me. For all of us.
He could have stopped it. He could have wiped everyone out right then and there. He could have done whatever He wanted. Because He’s God.
And what He wanted was for us to come to Him. To give our lives to Him. To know Him and believe Him.
He was not filled with wrath, but with mercy. He was tender. And forgiving up until His final breath.
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” And the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice. (Luke 23:34)
I think of how painful one prick of a thorn is on my hand, and look the blood that comes and cannot fathom what Christ endured for all of us. The scorn, the shame, the pain He took upon Himself. It is overwhelming really.
In this season of Lent, as we count down to Easter Sunday, my heart is filled with gratitude.
Thank you, Lord, for giving your life for us. For your tenderness. For your goodness. For your love. For your mercy. Thank you that you do not give us what we deserve, but instead forgive us time and time and time again. When we turn away. When we doubt. When we are not faithful.
Even when we hung you on a cross to die.
You never give up on us.
Fully God. And fully man.
Fully present. Always. You came to earth. You died a horrific death. You rose again.
I cannot comprehend the pain you endured. But when I see the blood on my hands, I am reminded of your sacrifice, and my heart is overwhelmed.
*This post originally appeared on my Truly Yours, Jen Facebook Page
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