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by Sari Ateek, Rector
In the Gospel of John, Chapter 15, Jesus says to his disciples, “There is no greater love than this: that one lay down their life for their friends.” Jesus believed that love reaches its peak when one is willing to sacrifice greatly for the sake of the well-being of another. Not out of co-dependence or fear, and not because one life is more valuable than another, but rather because one’s desire for the well-being of another reaches a point where it surpasses one’s own obsession with self.
This Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week, a time when we fix our eyes on the journey that Jesus made toward the cross – not unwillingly or out of some divine coercion, but rather because Jesus saw this journey as an expression of his love for us. I invite you to sit with this thought. Let it confound you. Let it stretch and challenge your perceptions of the cross, Jesus, AND YOU. Sit with the discomfort that this may bring up for you. Accept the truth: You are precious. You are loved.
May this demonstration of Jesus’ love for you be a point of entry to new place in your journey of faith this Holy Week. “There is no greater love than this: that one lay down their life for their friends.”