There is a great spiritual benefit to us when we reflect on the passion and death of Jesus Christ. "The Stations of the Cross" or "The Way of the Cross" is a scriptural, meditative prayer in which we call to mind certain moments of suffering that Jesus endured. We consider each station, perhaps reflect on a scripture passage, pray, and think about what Jesus went through for us. We then move on to the next station and do the same. We open our hearts to God, and allow His grace to enter as we pray. It's a powerful prayer approach and a very peaceful experience, as we contemplate God's tremendous Love for us.
As Good Friday approaches, it's a great time to pray this way. If you're not familiar with the Stations of the Cross, I have listed each one below with a particular scripture that we can reflect on. These are only my suggested scriptures, you can choose your own, or simply pray your own way. What's more important, is that we spend this time with Jesus, reflecting on the path He walked for our salvation.
We start each station by saying, "We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You. Because by your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world." Let's ask God The Holy Spirit, to guide our thoughts and fill our hearts as we think about each one.
The First Station: Jesus is condemned to death (Mark 14:61-64)
Second Station: Jesus Carries His Cross (John 19:14-16)
Third Station: Jesus falls the first time. (Psalm 140:5-6)
Fourth Station: Jesus meets His mother. (John 19:25-27)
Fifth Station: Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus carry the Cross. (Mk 15:21)
Sixth Station: Veronica wipes the face of Jesus. (Sirach 6:14)
Seventh Station: Jesus falls the second time. (Isaiah 53:4-7)
Eighth Station: Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem. (Luke 23:27-28) and (Lam 1:12)
Ninth Station: Jesus falls a third time. (Isaiah 53:12)
The Tenth Station: Jesus is stripped of His clothes. (Psalm 22:8)
The Eleventh Station: Jesus is nailed to the Cross. (Luke 23:33-43 and Psalm 22:16-19)
The Twelfth Station: Jesus dies on the Cross. (Lk 23:44-46) (John 19:28-30) (Romans 5:19)
The Thirteenth Station: The body of Jesus is taken down from the Cross (John 19:31-34)
The Fourteenth Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb. (Matt 27:59-60)
Widely accepted as The Fifteenth Station is of course The RESURRECTION, where we celebrate Christ's victory over sin and death when Jesus rises from the grave on Easter.
Praying in a reflective way using scripture draws us closer to Christ and opens our hearts to be changed. Through this prayer, we can grow in our relationship with Jesus who loves us - to death. God truly does Love us, and He has already proven it. Let's be open to His redemptive Love in a New Way, Today.