Day 35: At the Foot of the Cross | 40 Days of Focus

Day 35: At the Foot of the Cross | 40 Days of Focus

As Jesus looked down from the cross, there was a microcosm of the world. There were the scoffers, the indifferent or distracted, the horrified, the fearful, the grieving, the desperate, the disillusioned, and those for whom a light had dawned. With which of these would you most identify?

Most people reading this would probably not see themselves among the scoffers, but have our hearts ever been hardened to who Jesus is and His claim on our lives? There were soldiers at the foot of the cross, gambling for His clothing. Surely we wouldn’t be that crass, but how often are we indifferent to His suffering, forgetting to be amazed and grateful for what He has done? Are we so distracted by our own agenda that we turn our back on Him—not out of hostility but just out of preoccupation?

The followers of Jesus around the cross were confused, disillusioned, grief-stricken, afraid because things had gone totally off the rails. Do you relate? You believe, but God is just not behaving as you expected.

But some at the foot of the cross, like the Centurion, found faith, his hardheartedness was broken through. He probably didn’t bring a lot of preconceived notions about who Jesus was or what He came to do. He might well have been there from the arrest through the cross, witnessing the miracles, the demeanor, the patient suffering. Witnessing Jesus, as the Holy Spirit opened his eyes to truth. That’s the key to being open-hearted: keeping our eyes on Jesus, looking at Him through the insight of the Holy Spirit.

Consider

  • When do you sense hardness? Disillusionment from unmet expectations? Distractions or indifference?
  • What do you do to help keep your eyes fixed on Jesus and to keep your heart open to Him?

Pray

Lord, alert us to hardness, indifference, disillusionment, fear, or anything else that wrongly affects how we view Your sacrifice and our salvation. Allow Your Holy Spirit to open our heart and our eyes to truly see You, to drop our agendas and preconceived notions about who You are and how You work.

by Sheri Cook, Director of Special Ministries