A good friend of mine played the role of Thomas Moore in a rendition of “Man For All Seasons”. He did a very good job, but I knew he wasn’t Thomas More. He was playing Thomas Moore. Too often I can find that the words of the Passion seem too familiar. I’ve heard them many times. I can skip quickly through them. Are these characters playing a part in a play, a familiar play. Yet, at times I get drawn into the real drama. In the Matthew 26 narrative of the Passion, it says Jesus began to “feel sorrow and was deeply distress… he said “my soul is sorrowful even to death, the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
In some less but very real ways, I’ve felt sorrow and have been deeply distressed; my spirit has been willing but my flesh has been weak. It’s hard to experience that. But, here we’re talking about Jesus Christ, true God and true man. If he felt like this, it must have really been bad. It must have been awful. For Jesus Christ to say “my soul is sorrowful even unto to death”…. It must have been deadly, his very life being sucked out of him. I don’t want it to have been that bad. If it was that bad, then it means that I can’t be apathetic or blasé. I can’t give a half-hearted response. It can make me uncomfortable.
This was not a play. This was the drama of the universe. Christ wasn’t acting in a play. Christ was the key figure saving the entire world. It cost him everything. Lord, help me to give an authentic response to this incredible act of love.