Stations of the Cross

In Catholic theology, the stations of the cross are a 14-step devotion usually practiced on Good Friday that commemorates our Lord’s last day on earth qua human. I just spent a few days at Prince of Peace Abbey in Oceanside, a Roman Catholic monastery O.S.B. (in the order of Saint Benedict) praying, meditating on God’s Word, and walking the stations of the cross. This is what I felt the Lord speak to me as a devotional:

I Station: Christ was tried and condemned to death. Adoration: Praise you, Lord, for being condemned so I don’t have to be. Confession: I am being accused by Satan of being abandoned by God.

II Station: Christ carries His cross. Adoration: O beautiful Savior–You were so brave to die for me. Confession: I will bear my cross of fear and anxiety until the Lord takes it away.

III Station: Christ stumbles. Adoration: A righteous man stumbles but keeps getting up. Confession: Forgive me, Lord, for my pride and anxious thoughts that cause me to stumble.

IV Station: Mary, Mother of God, weeps at Jesus’ feet. Adoration: What an example You are, Lord, honoring Your mother on the way to the culmination of Your suffering. Confession: May I love and honor my mother as You loved and honored Yours.

V Station: Simon of Cyrene helps Christ carry His cross: Adoration: In Your humility You humbled Yourself even more by sharing Your cross with us. Confession: Help me to share my cross with others.

VI Station: Veronica wipes Jesus’ face with a wash cloth: Adoration: You let Your face be the laughing stock of a nation for those whom You’ve predestined. Confession: May I not be ashamed of the Gospel when the insults of my persecutors stick to my face like dirt.

VII Station: Christ stumbles again and gets flogged on the way to the cross. Adoration: By Your stripes we are healed. Confession: May I pray and bless those who kick me when I’m down.

VIII Station: Jesus meets and blesses the women of Jerusalem. Adoration: Your heart is aflame for widows and women who seek You whole heartedly. Confession: Help me to love whom You love–widows and orphans.

IX Station: Christ stumbles a third time needing help lifting the cross off His back in order to stand. Adoration: Your humility knows no bounds. Confession: May I accept the aid of those whom You’ve placed in my life to lift me up.

X Station: Jesus is disrobed, humiliated, and prepared to be lifted onto the cross. Adoration: Thank You, Lord, for taking on my sin, shame, and guilt all the while being innocent not fighting back but rather absolving every blow. Confession: Receive my sacrifice of humility and praise as a sweet smelling aroma.

XI Station: Nails are hammered into Jesus’ flesh sustaining Him to the cross. Adoration: Because of Your death we can live again; because of bondage to (our) sin we are set free; because of Your fulfillment we are forever filled and empowered by Your Holy Spirit. Confession: I desperately need Your power to live a life of freedom and virtue.

XII Station: Jesus hangs naked before and for all the world. Adoration: Hallelujah! You chose to die for all who believe and put their trust in You. Confession: I am not worthy of Your sacrifice but I accept it and I will share it with the world.

XIII Station: Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimethea take down the body of Jesus. Adoration: You love without discrimination; You love the rich and the poor, the gifted and the lame. Confession: Help me love the lovable and the unlovable all the same.

XIV Station: Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimethea place Jesus in the tomb. Adoration: You foreknew Your fate, the exact place the nails would pierce Your skin, the exact tomb that would encase but not hold Your body. Confession: May I trust in Your providence via Your foreknowledge when things don’t go the way I desire.

No matter what stage of life you’re in as you carry your cross, Jesus is with you every step of the way.

Chester Delagneau

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