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When love is crushed

When love is crushed

Friday April 15

A Reflection for Good Friday by the Rev Roddy Hamilton

Luke 23:26-35 

As they led him off, they made Simon, a man from Cyrene who happened to be coming in from the countryside, carry the cross behind Jesus. A huge crowd of people followed, along with women weeping and carrying on. At one point Jesus turned to the women and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, don’t cry for me. Cry for yourselves and for your children. The time is coming when they’ll say, ‘Lucky the women who never conceived! Lucky the wombs that never gave birth! Lucky the breasts that never gave milk!’ Then they’ll start calling to the mountains, ‘Fall down on us!’ calling to the hills, ‘Cover us up!’ If people do these things to a live, green tree, can you imagine what they’ll do with deadwood?”

Two others, both criminals, were taken along with him for execution.

When they got to the place called Skull Hill, they crucified him, along with the criminals, one on his right, the other on his left.

Jesus prayed, “Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they’re doing.”


And so comes the hour
When the road finally ends.

The light has run out,
And there is no curve in the path.

The finish line
Is close.

Yet there is still more road to walk,
Even if it is a ‘dead’ end.

A road scratched with lines
We thought you would not cross.

Yet you will,
And you do.

There is no line drawn on this final road
That you do not cross for us.

No limit to the love you have.
No ‘thus-far-and-no-further’ in the ethics of the kingdom.

No act, or deceit, or lie, or hatred where you cry ‘enough’.
Nothing so bad you refuse to love us.

And it is all borne under the weight of a cross.
And everything hurts.

Even heaven hurts,
and begins to change shape,

Contracting, angry,
Broken, sad.

As the light shrinks
And the shadows grow,

There is no more.

Surely the way to heaven
Is impossible from here?


In this collapse of hope,
When love is crushed
In the kiss of a friend,
May you drink of this cup, O Jesus,
Its twisted truth,
And bitter grace,
That we might yet believe
This way to heaven
Still holds hope.

In this final journey
Beyond what the world offers
In betrayal,
In fake news,
In weapons of war,
In fear,
May we still believe,
There is another moment to come.