Scripture: John 19:25-27 (alternate reading: Luke 7:1-10)
But standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, 'Woman, behold, your son!' Then he said to the disciple, 'Behold, your mother!' And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.
Meditation: Does suffering or sorrow weigh you down? The cross brings us face to face with Jesus' suffering. He was alone. All his disciples had deserted him except for his mother and three women along with John, the beloved disciple. The apostles had fled in fear. But Mary, the mother of Jesus and three other women who loved him were present at the cross. They demonstrate the power of love for overcoming fear (1 John 4:18).Love sustains us in hope through griefs and trials
The love of Christ enables us to bear all things
Jesus, in his grief and suffering, did not forget his mother. He entrusted her care to John, as well as John to her. No loss, no suffering can keep us from the love of Christ (Romans 8:35-39). Paul the Apostle says that love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things (1 Corinthians 13:3). We can find no greater proof of God's love for us than the willing sacrifice of his only begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, on the cross. Do you know the love that enables you to bear your cross and to endure trial and difficulties with faith and hope in God?
"Lord Jesus Christ, by your death on the cross you have won pardon for us and freedom from the tyranny of sin and death. May I live in the joy and freedom of your victory over sin, condemnation, and death."
In you, O Lord, do I seek refuge; let me never be put to shame;
in your righteousness deliver me!
Incline your ear to me, rescue me speedily!
Be a rock of refuge for me, a strong fortress to save me!
You hate those who pay regard to vain idols; but I trust in the Lord.
Daily Quote from the early church fathers: Mary stood at the cross with her Son Jesus, by Ambrose of Milan, 339-397 A.D.
"Mary, the mother of the Lord, stood by her Son's cross. No one
has taught me this but the holy Evangelist John. Others have
related how the earth was shaken at the Lord's passion, the sky
was covered with darkness, the sun withdrew itself (Matthew 27:45)
and how the thief was, after a faithful confession, received into
paradise (Luke 23:43). John tells us what the others have not
told, how the Lord while fixed on the cross called to his mother.
He thought it was more important that, victorious over his
sufferings, Jesus gave her the offices of piety than that he gave
her a heavenly kingdom. For if it is the mark of religion to grant
pardon to the thief, it is a mark of much greater piety that a
mother is honored with such affection by her Son. 'Behold,' he
says, 'your son.' ...'Behold your mother.' Christ testified from
the cross and divided the offices of piety between the mother and
the disciple... Nor was Mary below what was becoming the mother of
Christ. When the apostles fled, she stood at the cross and with
pious eyes beheld her Son's wounds. For she did not look to the
death of her offspring but to the salvation of the world. Or
perhaps, because that 'royal hall' [Mary as bearer of the divine
King] knew that the redemption of the world would be through the
death of her Son, she thought that by her death she also might add
something to that universal gift. But Jesus did not need a helper
for the redemption of all, who saved all without a helper. This is
why he says, 'I am counted among those who go down to the pit. I
am like those who have no help' (Psalm 88:4-5). He received indeed
the affection of his mother but sought not another’s help. Imitate
her, holy mothers, who in her only dearly beloved Son set forth so
great an example of maternal virtue. For neither have you sweeter
children, nor did the Virgin seek the consolation of being able to
bear another son." (excerpt from LETTER 63.109–11)
Scripture quotations from Common Bible: Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1973, and Ignatius Edition of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 2006, by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Citation references for quotes from the writings of the early church fathers.
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