Friday, March 23, 2012

Seven Last Words: "I Thirst"

(John 19:28-29)

During the seven weeks of Lent we invite you to  come and stand with us at the foot of the Cross as we listen to the 'Seven Last Words' spoken by Jesus.  Each week we will post a reflection which will seek guidance from these words as we, his Church today, like him, experience betrayal, criticism, abandonment and disownment.

In this fifth weekly Lenten Reflection we shall listen to Christ's call from the cross which demonstates his willing acceptance of his role in God's plan of Redemption and reflect on how we respond when we encounter this same thirst.


Only some hours before his crucifixion, Jesus, in the garden of Gethsemane, had asked his Father three times to, “take this cup away from me, but let your will be done, not mine”.  In the garden Jesus experienced intense sorrow, terror and anguish; his sweat falling to the ground like drops of blood.  His human nature had made him very afraid and unsure of what God’s will was for him.  Now, scripture is fulfilled, as nailed to the cross, he declares, “I thirst”.

Having asked for the cup to be taken from him only a short time before, Jesus now appears to ask for the cup.  Aware of his role in God’s plan of salvation his fifth words from the cross demonstrate a renewed recognition and trust in God’s will.  Accepting his role he boldly confirms, “I thirst; let me drink from this cup you have offered me; I ask for this cup; I trust in Your plan and I will fulfil Your will for me”.

Each of us here tonight has been offered a cup by God.  Like Jesus, the cup that God asks us to drink, the cup of God’s will that he asks us to trust and fulfil, can make us look at our lives and feel intense sorrow, terror and anguish.  And we, like Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane overwhelmed by these human emotions, can ask for this cup to be taken away.

When life seems unbearable for you, when you fear for the future and you struggle to make sense of God’s will where do you turn? (short pause)

Do you question God’s Will and ask for your cup to be taken from you? (short pause)

Do you wish for the cup of your neighbour? (short pause)

Or do you say, “Let Your will be done, not mine”, notwithstanding the personal pains and persecutions which often must be endured?  (short pause)

Jesus, on the cross, accepted his cup and boldly asked for God’s will to be hastened - let me drink from this cup, “I thirst”, bring it to me now.  We need to be able to discern God’s will for us.  We must open our eyes and our ears to God in order to see and hear the will of God as it unfolds around us and then with courage and conviction, regardless of what situation we find ourselves in, we too can trust in God and declare, “I thirst”; let me drink from this cup; bring it to me now; I am ready to fulfil your will.

Prayer for the week:

Lord Jesus, my soul aches at the mere mention of Your name. My heart leaps for every rumor of Your coming, and each possibility that You will manifest Your presence. I’m not satisfied with mere spiritual dainties. I’m ravenously thirsty for You in Your fullness, desperate to quench my thirst with the wine of Your Spirit.

Come and Join us....

If you live in Dublin why not come and be present for our 'Seven Last Words' Lenten Reflections?  The above reflection will be part of a 30 minute meditation held at the Our Lady of the Angels Capuchin Church on Church Street each Friday of Lent beginning at 8:00pm.  Music for these reflections will be provided by the CYC chamber choir. You can read the other weeks reflections here: week one, week two, week three, week four and week five.

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