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It was done.
The sun hid its face behind countless grieving clouds. The wind quickened to carry the word of mourning. The earth arose as if it wept. Laughing, vulgar faces abruptly ceased their reveling as darkness and fear sent them scurrying down the road seeking safety.

A small group remained, infinitesimal in comparison to the cheering crowds of just a few days before. A mother, a friend, a handful of women, an unknown number of acquaintances.

How, we ask, could those desert Him who followed Him for months, even years. How could the press of the crowds clamoring after the miracles, the healings, and the words He spoke, be reduced to a lonely handful on a hill?

We know the answer - for it is within ourselves. Their human frailty is our weakness. Their lack of faith is our absence of trust, Their humanity is ours.

In our doubt and unbelief, do we run to hide in a cave. When about us the ungodly grow full of earth's best, do we grumble at what we feel should be he spoils of this life? When we are straining beneath the load of, do we complain because one walks unfettered? When the way grows hard or our sun hidden by grief, do we hurry to bury our faces beneath the cover of solace?

The Cross. His cross and our cross. Can we stay by the side of Jesus regardless of outside influences or apprehensions? Can we be described in the terms Jacob used in his death-bed blessing of Joseph:
. . . the archers sorely grieved him, and shot him and hated him,
but his bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were
made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob

(Genesis 49:23, 24).


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Noel Brooks: A Life Shining and Burning, 1914-2006



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