For week 3 of Advent, I wanted to approach the story of Christ’s crucifixion from a slightly different perspective. This is the climax of the story that God had constructed before the very foundations of time. It is the pivotal moment in which countless belief systems diverge. It is the one event that holds the hope of all mankind.
So often we focus on the unimaginable agony that Christ suffered as he laid down his life for the salvation of the world. We know in great detail the unique brand of torture that the Romans reserved for Jesus as he willingly submitted his body to them. We are right to dwell on his suffering. It is in his suffering that we learn to truly take up our own cross, to die to ourselves, to somehow give of ourselves to others in a manner that reflects what Jesus did for us.
But this poem focuses on a different aspect of the crucifixion story. The agony of the Father.
What must it have been like for God the Father to usher his own son to his death? To draw him triumphantly through the gates of Jerusalem. To watch him be betrayed by his closest friends. To see him suffer. And then, in his wrath and love, turn his face from him as he died. As a father, I can’t even let myself mentally go there. This piece attempts to weigh out the balance between the beauty and tragedy of God’s ultimate plan for his son.
As a father, this piece pricked a very sensitive place in my heart. So I’ve tried to look at this story through my own fatherly eyes. It feels blasphemous to try and humanize God the Father, but is that not exactly what he himself did when he wrapped his son in our flesh? I’ve taken some liberties with this idea, of course. So please read this piece as poetic truth, not a direct interpretation of scripture.
Go child. Go to them now.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hope enters their gates.
Draw them to yourself.
For I have glorified your name, my son.
Bring light to them for a little while longer.
That they might become sons of light.
That my word might judge them,
and your body save them.
Go now where my favor will not follow you.
You will search the heavens for my face
And know that I have turned from you.
You will be the way, bone and blood,
My very fingerprint, forged from eternity past,
And I will break your heart.
Can you hear them? They cry out your name.
For their sake I will crush you,
For I am God, and I will judge the deeds of man
But the dust will not claim you.
And the shadow will not linger.
For I am good. And I will provide.
Sleep now, the Hope of all mankind.
Your journey is almost over.
For in three days the world will see my glory.