“And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.”

Philippians 2:8

Monday, 16 November 2020

Philippians 2:8

The cross signifies death. Crucifixion is a gruesome form of torture and was used by the Romans to punish slaves, outlaws and enemies of the state. Jesus’ death on the cross changed how people viewed the cross. Today it is a sign of eternal life. We believe that Jesus conquered death through it, bringing life for all of us.

I often ask myself this question: If I had a parent who thought saving the world meant handing me over to be killed, how would I feel? If I were asked to carry a cross for all, would I say yes to that request? Is it even humanly possible to agree to die for others? Then again, when I think of the love I have for my family, I would give my life in exchange for theirs. Perhaps this is the same love God has for us, and that made him give up his only son.

When we see someone suffer, some of us offer assistance. Others may choose not to get involved because that will be going out of our comfort zone. Carrying our crosses does mean losing touch with others or focusing on our own stuff. It means carrying burdens together, similar to the way Simon of Cyrene helped Jesus with his cross.

How often do I follow the example of Jesus and humble myself when faced with situations? Am I always respectful and obedient towards others, or am I disrespectful and rebellious?

This makes me wonder, how was Jesus able to keep his mouth shut to the very end when they were falsely accusing him? It must indeed have been a grace from God, because looking at our world today even children defend themselves against false accusations. What can I learn from the way Jesus carried his cross? Can I implement that in my own life?

Gracious Lord,

You have shown us the way of faith through your life. As a human being, I fall off track sometimes. Help me in my unbelief that I may follow in your footsteps.


Ms Nonto Thulile Mhlongo

Nonto Mhlongo works at the St Lucia Retreat and Training Centre giving retreats. She has completed the spiritual direction training programme with the Jesuit Institute.

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