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Angela Ashwin

Reflection for  April


St Paul writes, 'For I am convinced
that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers,
nor things present, nor things to come,
nor powers, nor height, nor depth,
nor anything else in all creation,
will be able to separate us
from the love of God
in Christ Jesus our Lord.'

Romans 8: 38-9 (NRSV)

No matter how much cruelty, evil and hatred

we humans threw at Jesus on the cross,
we could not stop him loving us.

Instead of breathing revenge,
or cursing those who mocked and abused him,
Jesus prayed for forgiveness as they crucified him,
and loved us to the end,
his life poured out to the last drop for us.

This unquenchable, unstoppable love of God in Jesus,
is at the heart
of the victory of the cross.

O Christ,
what have you not suffered,
what have you not given for us?
We can never fully comprehend
the mystery of your saving work.
But we can love you,
and wonder
at the depth of the darkness
that you entered on the cross,
and the depth of the love
that held you there.

'Be well aware:  Love was his meaning.
Who showed it thee?  Love.
What showed he thee?  Love.
Why did he show it thee?  For love.'

Julian of Norwich, 'The Revelations of Divine Love', 86.

The prayer 'O Christ, what have you not suffered' is adapted
from prayer No. 792 in 'The Book of a Thousand Prayers', edited by Angela Ashwin,
Zondervan, 2002 edition.