1Here is my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.
2He will not cry or lift up his voice,
or make it heard in the street;
3a bruised reed he will not break,
and a dimly burning wick he will not quench;
he will faithfully bring forth justice.
4He will not grow faint or be crushed
until he has established justice in the earth;
and the coastlands wait for his teaching. ~Isaiah 42: 1-4
A favourite spiritual “I want Jesus to Walk with me” takes on new meaning when we walk through a crisis in our lives. Whether we are impacted by a job loss, a separation or divorce, a cancer diagnosis, the loss of a loved one, or living in this current pandemic, this music give voice to who we know God to be. It is possible to weather the worst storm when we know that Jesus is with us. The servant of the Lord, the promised Messiah, Jesus, will not grow faint or be crushed. Jesus walks with us, supports us, leads us, holds our hand and even carries us through it all.
And this is the reminder we need as we approach this very different Holy Week. We are unable to enter this sacred, holy time in the same ways we used to. We still cannot gather in person. Our activities and worship services have been changed to speak into this time and to enable us to worship where we are. There are no public vigils, marches, or pilgrimages in the Holy Land, no gatherings in St. Peter’s Square.
The prophet Isaiah reminds us that even in a time of exile God sends his servant. The servant will establish justice, bringing a people in exile home, and restoring Israel. For us, God establishes justice through Jesus Christ by the events that unfold this Holy Week. So as we journey through this different kind of Holy Week, let us come to God in prayer, reflection, humility and gratitude as we remember God’s Son, our Lord, and his sacrifice, his passion and death for us. Jesus walks with us in our suffering, in all our trials and in this unusual time, we still journey with Jesus to Jerusalem. As the image above by Seamaire depicts, we walk together in this journey. We walk together as the body of Christ, even as we are apart.
God of hope, we thank you for sending us your servant, Jesus Christ, whose suffering, passion, death, and resurrection means hope and restoration for us. Be with us as we journey through this unusual Holy Week. Walk with us each day. Help us to know your presence is with us, your love supporting us, and your grace surrounding us, giving us strength to live each day in Jesus Christ, our Saviour and Lord. Amen.