Forsaken

Last year, I wrote a series of three poems used for reflection during my church's Good Friday service. I decided to repost them this year, one Wednesday, one Thursday, and one Friday, in the hope they may help us remember the great sacrifice that happened before the joy of Easter.

May these words remind us of the depth of Christ's love for us.


Is all this really necessary?
This cross? This consequence borne by Christ?

“My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”

Things are not that bad.
Are they? 

We can only grasp a fraction
Of the immense weight 
Crashing down upon Jesus
That day.

The unimaginable burden
Of not only our individual misdeeds
Or our personal omissions,
But the iniquities 
And atrocities
Of generation 
upon generation
upon generation.
The entirety of wickedness
Since evil invaded the world.

The sin of human history
Creating a distance beyond our understanding.

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Christ is forsaken. 
Dropped in the chasm 
Of overflowing corpses.
The bodies of those who have been massacred.
The hundreds murdered every day.
Every day.
For years stacked upon decades stacked upon centuries.

Christ is forsaken.
Adrift in the gulf
Of echoing wails.
The cries of those sexually assaulted.
Every two minutes. 
Over 
And over
And over again.
Shrieking in their violation and pain.

Christ is forsaken.
Standing in the abyss
Between oppressor and oppressed.
Taking the beatings of the millions,
Millions,
Who have been
And are 
And will be
Imprisoned, exploited, and enslaved.

Christ is forsaken.
Experiencing the void
Of lost generations.
Entire people groups wiped out
When neighbor turns against neighbor
When former friends slaughter one another
As nations collapse into genocide. 

It’s too much.
It’s all too much.

Too much for us to hold. 
Too vast for us to grasp.

This is the great burden borne by Christ.
Taking iniquities beyond imagination
Upon the only shoulders broad enough to carry them 
And loving enough to be crushed by their weight.

From the chasm of evil, 
For the sake of humanity,
Jesus cries out,
“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

"Why have you forsaken me?"

Artist: Edvard Munch Source: WikiPaintings Is all this really necessary? This cross? This consequence borne by Christ?

“My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”

Things are not that bad. Are they?

We can only grasp a fraction Of the immense weight Crashing down upon Jesus That day.

The unimaginable burden Of not only our individual misdeeds Or our personal omissions, But the iniquities And atrocities Of generation upon generation upon generation. The entirety of wickedness Since evil invaded the world.

The sin of human history Creating a distance beyond our understanding.

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Christ is forsaken. Dropped in the chasm Of overflowing corpses. The bodies of those who have been massacred. The hundreds murdered every day. Every day. For years stacked upon decades stacked upon centuries.

Christ is forsaken. Adrift in the gulf Of echoing wails. The cries of those sexually assaulted. Every two minutes. Over And over And over again. Shrieking in their violation and pain.

Christ is forsaken. Standing in the abyss Between oppressor and oppressed. Taking the beatings of the millions, Millions, Who have been And are And will be Imprisoned, exploited, and enslaved.

Christ is forsaken. Experiencing the void Of lost generations. Entire people groups wiped out When neighbor turns against neighbor When former friends slaughter one another As nations collapse into genocide.

It’s too much. It’s all too much.

Too much for us to hold. Too vast for us to grasp.

This is the great burden borne by Christ. Taking iniquities beyond imagination Upon the only shoulders broad enough to carry them And loving enough to be crushed by their weight.

From the chasm of evil, For the sake of humanity, Jesus cries out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”


This is another reflection I wrote for my church's Good Friday service. In honor of this day of waiting, as we sit in the waiting space before the resurrection, it feels appropriate to continue pondering Christ's death. I hope it helps you do that today.

A Prayer for Our Work

A Prayer for Our WorkI’ve been working in one form or another since I was 13 years old, first as a babysitter, than as a McDonald’s employee. I was one of the rare people who worked fast food for more than a week. I worked there 3 years. In my adult life, I have been an autism therapist, a children’s pastor,  a stay at home mom, and now, a leader in a different church community. Work has been a big part of my life, just as I’m sure it has been for yours. Work is part of our shared experience as humans, however varied the form that work takes in our lives.

But what is God's purpose for work? If it's where we spend so much of our time, what does it look like to live out our faith in that setting?

Work was part of God’s plan from the beginning. It is not a result of a broken world. It is not a mistake. It is intrinsically good. It is part of the design of humanity to partner with God in creation.

God could have filled the earth himself, but he invited humanity to be co-creators with him; to build upon his foundation, and create cultures, societies, cities, art, and more.

Sadly, though, after the perfection and harmony of the beginning, Adam and Eve became convinced that God was holding out on them. They grasped for something they were meant to find in God alone. They ate the one fruit they were told not to have, sin entered the world, and the effects snowballed immediately.

Before long, God pronounced His judgment about what would happen to them and to the world as a result of their choice. One of the big consequences was the nature of work.

Today we know how often work is difficult. That’s why complaining about it is one of the most common topics of conversation between friends.

The thing is, the Bible talks about the frustration of work, too. I love that the Bible doesn’t pretend things are easier than they are.

As part of our church sermon series on work, I did a message about the toil of work, and how Christ meets us there to redeem it. The above words were part of that message, along with a few more. I  thought I would share a link to listen to that message if you are interested.

Click here and listen to the message called "The Reward of Work."

And, as part of that message, I also wrote a prayer that I wanted to share with you. A prayer for how Christ might use our work to bring His redemption and grace. You can click on the picture above to print out a 5 by 7  graphic, or just read from the text below:

Christ, work through me today To bring healing into hurt To find potential in others To shine light into darkness To create beauty in ugliness To bring order into chaos. Christ, work in me today To feel humility regardless of success To be disciplined regardless of accountability To find joy regardless of reward To love regardless of how I am loved To seek You regardless of what else pulls my attention. Christ, work on my behalf today, As I rest in my identity as Your beloved.

Whatever kind of work you find yourself in today, whether in or out of the home, that is my prayer for you.