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Lenten Reflections


Jesus, risen

As a new teacher, I kept on feeling like any of my student’s mistakes was a direct result of my inadequacy. Everything felt so uncertain. Who was I going to be as a teacher? Who were these students going to be under my instruction? Will I ruin them?
In the midst of uncertainty, I longed for hope.
In hindsight, hope is a funny answer to uncertainty. Hope does not promise answers. Hope does not promise safety. Hope does not even promise our tomorrow.

Station 14

Jesus, laid in the tomb

I wonder what it was like in that moment between the cross and the tomb. The uncomfortable stillness. The tense emptiness. I wonder what it was like to be there, to witness an empty cross and an empty tomb.

Station 13

Jesus, down from my cross

The moment that my grandpa’s death struck reality for me was when my sister started to cry right before burying him. Her tears reminded me of him, one of the brightest lights in my world for such a long time.

Station 12

Jesus Dies For Us
““Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.” Death is never something I like to think about. At funerals, I don’t even go near open caskets unless that person means a great deal to me. Yet this passage constantly reminds me of my grandfather’s death. It was a sudden death from an aggressive cancer. He struggled to breath throughout his stay at the hospital as his lungs filled with what I think was pneumonia even with the help of oxygen and a BiPAP machine. And when it was finally his time, his last breath sounded more like a sigh of relief like peace was finally truly his.

Station 11

Jesus, pierced for me

You are stretched out on the cross you have carried so far. The soldiers take big nails and drive them into your hands and feet. You feel abandoned by the people you loved so much. People seem to have gone mad. You have done nothing but good, yet they drive nails through your hands and feet.

Station 10

Jesus strips away my comfort.

I love guidelines and routine. It brings me comfort to know what is coming up and to prepare myself for the hours and days ahead. God had other plans for me for the third week of February. On that weekend, I took care of both my young daughters, on my own, for the first time ever. The guidelines I put in place all relied on having help from my wife, my family, or my friends. The routines I have created only take into consideration the needs of one daughter at a time. With both girls vying for my attention simultaneously, I had to learn to rely on Something within me I did not know existed. This Something is new to me, but Jesus had placed it in my being from the beginning and He was looking for a moment in my life to show me that it is there.

Station 9

Jesus, who didn’t let me fall alone

Most of my childhood, I wanted to believe that if I loved God enough, He would put a bubble around me and defend me from the evils of the world.

Station 8

Jesus, who serves selflessly

Hindsight is often 20/20, revealing what we missed, overlooked, or ignored in life. As I turn 24 this year, I've been reflecting on my relationships, especially with my parents. Looking back, it's clear they were always there for me, even when I didn't appreciate their help or when they faced their own challenges. I grew up in a comfortable home, with everything I needed. My parents sacrificed their own dreams to support mine, yet I failed to notice or to understand their efforts. I took their gifts for granted, unaware of their sacrifices.

Station 7

Jesus picks me up when I fall

Something that I often struggle with is how hard I am on myself. I hold myself to high standards in almost everything that I do whether it be work, physical and spiritual goals, or ministry tasks. This has been a theme I’ve noticed throughout most of my youth and young adult life and one that I often bring to Jesus when it comes up again during various parts of my life. Whenever I make a mistake or falter in my goals, my tendency when things go wrong is to look inward first and beat myself up. I get caught up in what I should have done. I tell myself “It must be something that I did wrong. What’s wrong with me?”. In the end, I almost always feel defeated and frustrated with myself.

Station 6

Jesus wipes away my suffering
There have been many notable patients that I have met. However, one Hispanic woman stands out in my mind. When I first met her, she was extremely pale and withdrawn, laying flat and still on the hospital bed. She spoke a few words and quietly nodded in response. She was admitted for uncontrollable uterine bleeding but was worried about her immigrant status. After multiple blood transfusions, she was finally ready for discharge. On that day, she was sitting in a chair, smiling with a rosy complexion against a shining sun. Using a hospital translator, she repeatedly thanked us, with tears in her eyes, for helping her.

Station 5

Jesus, who helps me carry my cross

My husband and I struggled through 2 years of infertility after we got married. During that time, the constant appointments, supplements, charting, dieting, and lab tests were draining and made me wonder if I’d get to live out my dream of being a mom. It was agonizing to swing between hope and mourning every month and I remember pleading with God, “I can't carry this cross anymore. It's too heavy. Can't you carry it for me?” In my prayer, God answered, “Beloved, I am with you always” and I would see Him hunched over carrying the main body of the cross, while the part in my hands was actually very small.

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Station 4

Jesus & Mama

My daughter is one of the most spirited little humans I know. She's always pushing her boundaries and testing my patience. Whether she's teetering on the edge of the couch or sprinting full speed without a care, I'm constantly on alert, ready to catch her and shield her from harm.

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Station 3

Jesus, the dependable, falls

Whenever my dad asked me for help around the house as a kid, I would help, but I knew that my dad did 90% of the work. I felt weak and useless but loved knowing that my father wanted to be with me as he worked.

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Station 2

Jesus, who bares all of our crosses

When I think of crosses, I always imagine this lifelong burden that seems impossible to carry. Even worse, I don’t know when to put it down or what my destination is. This station reminds me that we all have a cross to bear. He gave us this cross from the beginning hoping that we would someday accept and take up our cross knowing that we would be strong enough to carry it one day.

Station 1

Jesus, who is condemned by insecurities

“And your Father who sees in secret will repay you”

Through most of my young adult life and to this day, I struggle with the modern perception of needing to fit in with the latest trends and many times this notion leads me to feelings of insecurity, pride, resentment, shame, etc. I hear myself saying things like:

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