Connecting with Culture
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It’s a reflective time for the UK.
Two weeks ago we were invited to pause and reflect on a year since Lockdown One.
Today, on Good Friday, churches invite everyone to pause and reflect on the cross.
We should find connections between these two events. And those connections should seep into our words and actions.
It’s clear the Queen’s famous annus horribilis in 1992 has been trumped. This has been a year dominated by negative news.
The positive exceptions must, of course, be treasured. We’ve re-found heroes among NHS workers and supermarket shelf-fillers, for example. But highlights are easier to spot when it’s dark outside.
This has been a year with more than its fair share of doom and gloom. We’ve lived through limitations and frustrations, and we’ve grieved as more than 125,000 in the UK haven’t lived through it at all.
Good Friday is a reflection day for Christians. But we’re supposed to survey the wondrous cross in order to convey the wondrous cross.
So, if the cross speaks in all contexts, to all people, what timely words can we take to heart and take to others on our frontlines?
When Grünewald painted the crucifixion to display in a hospice caring for those with the plague or leprosy, he depicted Jesus with bubonic sores, symbolically showing that Jesus understood and shared their afflictions.* What can we emphasise in Christ’s sacrifice and offer to a world in waiting this year?
To a hurting and grieving world, may we find words of empathy and healing.
The cross offers those facing death a vital chance to reassess life.
To a troubled and waiting world, may we find words of comfort and hope.
The cross suggests there’s more going on than meets the eye.
To a confused and weary world, may we find words of help and direction.
The cross gives us more than enough to go on – and keep going on.
In the end, our reflections on the cross point to a Saviour who brings good from bad. We are reminded that a broken world is not the end of the story.
We look beyond today and our faith points to the one not limited by isolation.
To the one who steps through a locked door and a locked-down room and offers shalom.
We reflect – on the cross, today, so our lives better reflect the cross, wherever we find ourselves, tomorrow. Let’s convey this cross.
Director of Church Relationships, LICC