3 yellow roses

26363: At the Name of Jesus

Contemplating the Cross,
A Prigrimage of Prayer

by Tricia McCary Rhodes
ISBN 0-7642-2049-7

Very often Easter season seems to be upon us so fast that we haven't really had time to prepare our hearts and minds to appreciate the depths of Christ's passion and what it is to us.

This year however, I happened to have this book lying near my bed and I took to reading a short section each night just before turning out the light. It prepared me for Easter in a wonderful way. I have a fresh appreciation for our Saviour's agony in the garden, the betrayal and arrest, the very unfair and illegal trials, and all the stages of His scourgings, crucifixion, death, and hallelujah, His resurrection!

At each stage or experience, Rhodes stops to consider what this means to us quite personally, suggests a response the reader should make to Christ, and a prayer. One simply can't help but be affected when drawn in like that.

There are 40 short chapters, so it would be possible to make this your Lenten project for next spring. Plan to do one reading and response assignment each day.

On the other hand, it would be a good idea to do this at another time of the year too, so you are not thinking, "Look, I'm doing an Easter devotion," but rather that you focus on getting to know what your Saviour really suffered for you, and to love Him afresh and quite intimately for it. If we are looking for intimacy with God, we'll HAVE to spend time learning to love and appreciate how much Christ has loved us and what that love cost us. In fact, that's the starting point for any growing intimacy we expect to have with Him.

I know that I thought I loved the Lord a great deal, but reading this book freshened up a love for Him that I had got sort of used, and begun to take for granted. This may not be the only book that can stir up such love, and of course, the best book to do that is the Bible, which we ought to be reading daily at all times. Still, sometimes we need someone else to stimulate us anew, as we see how that person sees Christ.

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