On the night when he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and said, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” (1 Corinthians 11: 23b-24 NLT)
|Wake-up & Smell the Roses
Legendary sportscaster, Vince Scully, once said, “God gave us memories so we could have roses in December.” Remembering the Cross of Christ puts everything in perspective in our Christian experience.
Life is about thorns and roses, the bad and good things we experience. We live in a fallen world. People are not perfect. Even the very elect, our brothers, and sisters are not faultless. If you have not found that out, you will, but don’t become too judgmental because you are in that group also. In any relationship, things happen that are good and some that are not. Memories are about all of our life experiences. We do not have control over what happens to us, but we do have influence, at least in part, in what we remember. We can choose to forgive and move on or hold on to the negative. Jesus did not wait for us to become good, he died for us even while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8 NLT). Seeking forgiveness from God for ourselves and yet refusing to forgive others, reveals how little we understand the extent of our forgiveness.
We need both the roses and thorns. That beautiful flower grows out of the stem that has the barbs. Our journey to spiritual maturity to the “mountain of delights,” often goes through the valley of despair. Even Jesus himself “learned obedience through the things he suffered” (Hebrews 5:8 NLT). When others are mistreating you, and your life feels dark and bleak, like the weather in December, think about what Christ did for you on that tree. Then wake-up and smell the roses.
Image used with permission by Microsoft.
Ken Barnes the author of “The Chicken Farm and Other Sacred Places” YWAM Publishing