Read: Matthew 27:11-56
This year, many of us have been swept away in the adrenaline of a sudden leadership change, a crisis on campus or in our community, or a snowballing conflict in your organization. The adrenaline builds as we watch the unbelievable unfold, we get caught up in the surge of the crowd around us or online, we lash out in frustration or hide in the shadows of firelight. And then before the earth makes a full turn, the deafening crescendo leaves a sudden silence.
And the Messiah, the One Who Saves, is dead. It is—finished.
Prayer: Lord, let us look to you, calm as a Lamb, when we are awash in the adrenaline and know in that silence, that You have finished it.
[photo devotional: “Awash in the Circumstances” Laura Kooistra Weimer]
Read: Matthew 27:57-66
In September, local facebook feeds lit up with news from our shopping mall: there had been a stabbing, then hearing that one person, no, eight people died; then that the assailant had been killed; and then that the man was a student at our university, and Somali. The serene safety of this Midwestern town died—quite literally. Anxiety surged as doors locked all over the city that Saturday, some in fear of another attack and some in fear of racial retaliation.
In the adrenaline of the horrific death of the King of the Jews, two men go to Pilate. Joseph responds to Jesus’ death with tender care and honor, the Pharisee in fear while demanding armed guards. After the clamoring crowds, the violence of the crowds, the publicity of the trial, and the finality of death, the anxious silence prompted two very different responses.
Prayer: Lord God, in the quiet of the night after the adrenaline has spent us, fill that anxious space in us with care and honor for the grieving and hurt rather than lingering hate and fear. Come Lord Jesus. We long to see you!