If there is one thing which has stuck with me these past few days as our local faith community has read and considered portions of the passion narrative, it is Jesus’ steadfast walk towards and into Jerusalem with all the risk involved. He would not be swayed, by easy ways out, diversions, political or offensive strategies. He somehow commanded the courage to keep calm and carry on as the wartime phrase says.
Given his absolute confidence found in connection with God the Creator, he lived life as only he could. His was such a lonely road, which is why Luke’s gospel in particular stresses the cost of the journey itself.
On Wednesday we heard shared Hebrews 12:1 together.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us
Perseverance . . . a quality little known to the folks who seek endless stores of labour-saving devices and create social structures which insulate us from harm or even its possibility.
Environmental advocacy here in North America has its supporters, even in the churches, but for those who take the long view, and have devoted many years to what often seems an endless struggle, the way is fraught with resistance, sometimes actual danger, and much fatigue.
A new ACEN representative wrote to me the other day:
I know my first feeling is one of encouragement and hope, because it can be such a lonely road and the more we are together the stronger we will be and so will be our message.
Amen. And again I say (and feel) Amen. So friends let us keep up the witness for God’s wonderful creation. Entities with more money, energy and probably a more clearly defined strategy will continue doing what they think is the right thing to do. Let us together provide reality checks, theological responses, well coordinated activism, sacrificial and simplified lifestyles, and prayer, especially as we behold the Christ of the cross on this Good Friday.