A large crowd trailed behind, including many grief-stricken women. But Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, don’t weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For the days are coming when they will say, ‘Fortunate indeed are the women who are childless, the wombs that have not borne a child and the breasts that have never nursed.’ People will beg the mountains, ‘Fall on us,’ and plead with the hills, ‘Bury us.’For if these things are done when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”
Jesus did not walk to the cross alone; people followed so that they could watch. These women loved Jesus, and didn’t want him to die. When I imagine myself in the story of the cross, I would hope I was in this camp. They don’t want this to happen. They don’t want their Savior to die, but Jesus doesn’t want them to miss it. He doesn’t want them to miss the point of all of this.
He wants them to know that he’s doing this for them. He is saving them from what is to come. If I don’t do this, then there is no hope in your future. This is not the worst it gets. Jesus is telling them to accept that it will get worse, but he also knows they’re about to experience hope. He doesn’t want them to miss the beauty of the resurrection because they are sad about this moment with him.
And Jesus is saying this to us today. As we walk through these stations we can despair at the hopelessness of our Savior going to the cross, but we also know the end of the story. We know he will rise again. The world is uncertain, and there is always reason to despair, but we can hope in the end of the story. If the crucifixion of our Savior Jesus, ended in resurrection and hope, so can all of our stories.
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28
Pray today that in the midst of despair and hopelessness, you can remember the end of the story. Pray that God will reveal himself to you in your most difficult times.
For the Kids:
Have you ever had something bad or sad happen to you, and then it ended up actually really great? (Try to share a story from your own life to help them think of answers)
Ask your children to tell you the story of Jesus on the cross. What happens? What happens afterwards?
As they tell the story, ask them how they would feel if they were there each step of the way.
Read Luke 23:27-31
Explain to them that these women thought that this was the end of the story. They didn’t know Jesus would rise again. And Jesus wanted to remind them that this wasn’t about him, it was about what was going to happen, and it was going to be amazing.
Have the children pray and thank God that there is a good ending to this story, and a good ending to all of their stories.