One aspect of my personality that I need to work on is my self-restraint. At times, I just go on out there and say things I shouldn’t; do things I shouldn’t. Not really out of anger, but out of frustration. I can handle anger; but frustration – not being able to fix/correct something – really, well, frustrates me.

As we have just “celebrated” Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and anticipate Easter, self-restraint tops my mind every year. The self-restraint it took Jesus, both God and man, to not simply command the mockery, the torture, the pain to end is amazing. This act is the most powerful expression of love.

I continued reading The Jesus I Never Knew by Phillip Yancey this morning I looked at my son who was eating from his bottle and looking up at me. “I have marveled at, and sometimes openly questioned, the self-restraint God has shown throughout history, allowing the Genghis Khans and the Hitlers and the Stalins to have their way. But nothing – nothing – compares to the self-restraint shown that dark Friday in Jerusalem. With every lash of the whip, every fibrous crunch of fist against flesh, Jesus must have mentally replayed the Temptation in the wilderness and in Gethsemane. Legions of angels awaited his command. One word, and the ordeal would end.”  For me as a father to not stop the torture of my son – unimaginable. As much as I care for and love other people – no one would get away with torturing my son even with my limited power and even if it meant others would die in his place.

Imagine going through Good Friday and Saturday without knowing what happened on Easter morning. We read the story in light of the outcome – not as how people lived it. Your friend, your Lord, mocked, tortured, crucified, dead. Your thoughts, your actions, your life would be impacted on a greater scale not knowing that you will see Him again on Sunday morning.

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