Today is the Wednesday of Holy Week. Wednesdays are usually days in which I think about the weekend plans and see what to look forward to in the days ahead.
This week, we look to Easter. We pause in our calendar to put aside this week as a Holy Week, a time to remember who we serve as Christians and the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
So, before we get to the Easter egg hunts, the family dinners and the celebration with flowers and nice dresses, we walk through this week.
We hear the story again of the way that the Son of God entered into his last days on earth. The last weeks with Jesus’ disciples and how one of the disciples, Judas, began to betray to him,
turning him over to the authorities for crucifixion, even while sitting next to him at a dinner feast.
We enter into the parts of the holy week that we can sometimes easily gloss over from Sunday to Sunday. Jesus endured the cross, endured the hostility from the very people who followed him.
The betrayal, the way of the cross, the crowds yelling Crucify and the Son of God dying at the hands of us, and after the awesome silence, grief of death, Jesus rises.
This is our story. People from over 2000 years have followed this story, pilgrims on this journey, and relived this story in their own time and place.
So today’s Scripture, we hear words from Hebrews remind us in chapter 12: 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, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
A great cloud of witnesses, like a great crowd of people, scholars would say gathered as spectators at an athletic event.
Can you picture the Cornhusker stadium or Royals stadium filled with people all around through the ages?
Gathered around us who the race is not finished yet.
Saints and the witnesses from all time and space are watching us as we are the runners in the faith now, cheering us on. As we come to this Holy Week.
We are the ones run the race,
We look to Jesus as the source and guidance and aid.
As you think about your weekend, challenge you to run with endurance. Recover your strength. Stay on course. Do not grow weary or lose heart this Easter season.
Find others who are running this race with you, connect with them in a local church as we remember our story. Invite people to join you in this race of our faith this week.