Whenever we come to Holy Week, this holiest of all the weeks in the year, I feel completely unable to express myself in words. I rather keep quiet and meditate than write. But this time I felt the urge to share with you this burning sensation that often tugs at my heart, namely the indescribable surrender of Jesus to the will of the Father: “Not as I will but as YOU will.” I often imagine the struggle in his heart and the total freedom he exercised in letting himself be led like a lamb to the slaughter house, and he did not open his mouth in protest (Is. 53:7)! Yet, he is God who knows their hearts, who knows that their thoughts and intentions are filled with ambitious self-interest that pretends to defend God; who knows that the justice system is completely skewed from the start to convict him; who knows that in the midst of all the rowdiness, there is no honest desire for truth and genuine compassion; rather, there is a public declaration of preference for the false, the violent, and all that leads to chaos and death. In this confused atmosphere orchestrated by high ranking men of religion and directed by intelligent Roman leaders, stands Our Lord completely silent and tossed around like a criminal without any integrity!
But he is God in human form. He lets men exercise their power over him; he lets men vent upon him all the darkness of their greed for power and self-righteousness; he lets the crowd reveal their thoughtlessness and ready willingness to follow the powerful even if it means betraying truth and love; he lets the so-called educated ones make a public display of their ignorance and arrogant devotion to their blind sense of reality. Name it. He lets darkness pretend just for a while that it is powerful.
It is the Father’s will, not that the Son should die, but that he should consistently be obedient to the Father whose inner life is love. “Not as I will but as YOU will”! There is nothing more to say because in these words, Our Lord sums up the underlying thread that tie his entire life together. In obedience to love, he is ready to let evil have its way in order to vanquish it once and for all. After all, as God, he has power over any form of evil including death. That power is the power of love. It is love that has the power to conquer any evil or hatred; it is love that seeks truth and justice; it is love that sees that all are children of God; it is love that holds all things and all persons together; it is love that exposes the dark forces that seek to oppress and cause division in and among individuals.
Loving Jesus, please help me to be strong always and to be obedient to you. Do not let the flame of your love in my heart be dimmed or put out by anything. Reign in me, my Precious Lord, and let nothing ever take me away from you no matter what it is. It is your will that I desire at all times in my life. May you be praised now and forever, Amen.