A Good Friday meditation: give me the human Jesus

IMG_1813I am so tired of sanitized Jesus.

The divinity that often eclipses his humanity

The one with no dirt under his fingernails

no callouses on his worn-out, sandaled feet 

with no pain in his voice;

as we skip from the betrayal to forgiveness (of course he'll forgive!)

a mite too quickly

without glimpsing the sorrow on his face,

without dwelling on the shame of his nakedness

the mocking jeers, the lots cast, the tear of flesh

as the Cross hung him out to dry.

Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me!

Nevertheless, not mine, but your will be done.

Take away your movie-star Jesus,

the one with perfect teeth and gorgeous hair,

and give me the man from Galilee

who built tables with his hands

and liked the least, the lost and the left-out most of all;

whose robe touched the unclean woman

but instead of uncleanness flowing out from her

his wholeness flowed into her.

Give me the Jesus who weeps when his friend dies

and eats fish for breakfast on the shore, as it sticks between his teeth;

the one who has physical needs his friends meet.

This Jesus.

This 33-year-old man with longings and sorrow and joy.

And for heaven's sake, when you give me Jesus,

help me never, never to forget his bloody Cross.

"Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself, by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Philippians 2:6-11