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Saturday, 23 April 2011

Come Walk With Me – The Easter Prayer 2011


Come Walk With Me – The Easter Prayer 2011

1. Jesus is Condemn to death

Bible Reading; Matthew 27:22-26
Pilate said to them, ‘Then what should I do with Jesus who is called the Messiah?’* All of them said, ‘Let him be crucified!’ Then he asked, ‘Why, what evil has he done?’ But they shouted all the more, ‘Let him be crucified!’ So when Pilate saw that he could do nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took some water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, ‘I am innocent of this man’s blood;* see to it yourselves.’ Then the people as a whole answered, ‘His blood be on us and on our children!’ So he released Barabbas for them; and after flogging Jesus, he handed him over to be crucified.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you were condemned to death for political expediency; be with all those imprisoned unjustly and help us to change the minds of oppressors and exploiters everywhere. Amen.

2. Jesus Receives the Cross.

Bible Reading; John 19:16-17
Then he handed him over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus; and carrying the cross by himself, he went out to what is called The Place of the Skull, which in Hebrew* is called Golgotha.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you carried the cross, laden with the weight of our sins, through the rough streets of Jerusalem; be with those who are loaded with burdens beyond their strength; and help us to realize the cost of your love for us. Amen.

3. Jesus falls for the first time.

Bible Reading; John 12:23-24
Jesus answered them, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.

Prayer:
How can it be, Lord Jesus, eternal Son of God, that you should fall down? O Jesus, I wonder how heavy was my share of the burden you bore on your shoulder. In your tender mercy, do not let me be discouraged by my failures but lift me up and bring me to the father. Amen.

4. Jesus meets his mother

Bible Reading; Luke 2:33-35
And the child’s father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. Then Simeon* blessed them and said to his mother Mary, ‘This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed—and a sword will pierce your own soul too.’

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, she stayed with you step by step, from stable to Nazareth and on to Cana; now she can only watch. How can a mother see her son suffer? Look mercifully on all parents who watch helplessly as their children grow, stumble and fall, and in wiping away their tears, give them patience and hope. Amen.

5. The Cross is laid upon Simon of Cyrene.

Bible Reading; Luke 23:26
As they led him away, they seized a man, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming from the country, and they laid the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you were worn down by fatigue and in simplicity accepted the help of a stranger; be with those who are overwhelmed and exhausted by work, by stress, by responsibility and when an invited cross is loaded onto our shoulder, may we willingly carry it for you. Amen.

6. Veronica wipes the face of Jesus.

Bible Reading; Matthew 25:34-40
Then the king will say to those at his right hand, “Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?” And the king will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family,* you did it to me.”

Prayer:
O Jesus, may our contemplation of your passion move us deeply and inspire in us a fervent love for you, that the image of your tear-stained face may be impressed on our hearts. Amen.

7. Jesus falls the second time.

Bible Reading; Psalm 44:25-26
Rouse yourself! Why do you sleep, O Lord? Awake, do not cast us off for ever! Why do you hide your face? Why do you forget our affliction and oppression? For we sink down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground. Rise up, come to our help. Redeem us for the sake of your steadfast love.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, in order to save the human race, you staggered on your painful journey; whenever people are tempted to give up, have mercy on those who are close to despair. Amen.

8. Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem.

Bible Reading; Luke 23:27-31
A great number of the people followed him, and among them were women who were beating their breasts and wailing for him. But Jesus turned to them and said, ‘Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For the days are surely coming when they will say, “Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.” Then they will begin to say to the mountains, “Fall on us”; and to the hills, “Cover us.” For if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?’

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, the women of Jerusalem wept for you; move us to tears at the plight of our broken world and help us to weep for our sins; send your blessing on the city of Jerusalem today, that it may indeed be the city of Peace. Amen.

9. Jesus falls for the third time.

Bible Reading; Psalm 38:7-11
For my loins are filled with burning, and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am utterly spent and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart. O Lord, all my longing is known to you; my sighing is not hidden from you. My heart throbs, my strength fails me; as for the light of my eyes—it also has gone from me. My friends and companions stand aloof from my affliction, and my neighbours stand far off.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, as you crash to the hard stones of the Jerusalem street, I see what my falling into sin does to your heart of love. Be with me in my times of temptation and lift my eyes to see the glories of your kingdom. Amen.

10. Jesus is stripped of his garments.

Bible Reading; John 19:24
So they said to one another, ‘Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see who will get it.’ This was to fulfil what the scripture says, ‘They divided my clothes among themselves, and for my clothing they cast lots.’

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, how anxious I am to conceal my real self even from you. How reluctant I am to acknowledge my responsibility for what I do and say. Help me to be confident of your love and forgiveness and remind me that I am made in the image of God. Amen.

11. Jesus is nailed to the cross

Bible Reading; John 17:1-3
After Jesus had spoken these words, he looked up to heaven and said, ‘Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all people,* to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, you bled in pain as the nails were driven into your flesh, transform, through the mystery of your love, the pain of those who suffer. Amen.

12. Jesus dies on the cross.

Bible Reading; Philippians 2:6-8
Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death even death on a cross.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, in death you entered the darkest of all places; give us all the courage in the hour of our death and illumine our darkness with your glorious presence. Amen.

13. Jesus’ body is laid in the arms of his mother.

Bible Reading; John 19:32-38a
Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who had been crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once blood and water came out. (He who saw this has testified so that you also may believe. His testimony is true, and he knows* that he tells the truth.) These things occurred so that the scripture might be fulfilled, ‘None of his bones shall be broken.’ And again another passage of scripture says, ‘They will look on the one whom they have pierced.’ After these things, Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, though a secret one because of his fear of the Jews, asked Pilate to let him take away the body of Jesus.

Prayer:
Merciful Jesus, whose mortal body was returned to the loving arms of his mother; heal the sadness of all those who mourn. Amen

14. Jesus’ body is laid in the tomb.

Bible Reading; John 19:38b-42
Pilate gave him permission; so he came and removed his body. Nicodemus, who had at first come to Jesus by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, weighing about a hundred pounds. They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews. Now there was a garden in the place where he was crucified, and in the garden there was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, though you were the Lord of Life, you became as nothing for us and you were laid in a cold, dark tomb; be with those who feel worthless, those ignored by the world and those who dies alone and afraid. Amen.

Everlasting God, who in your tender love towards the human race, sent your son our saviour Jesus Christ to take upon him our flesh and to suffer death upon the cross; grant that we may follow the example of his patience and humility and also be made partakers of his resurrection, through Jesus Christ our Lord who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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