It was hot and humid the day Jesus was made to drag his cross up the hill of Calvery. The sweat on his forehead mingled with the blood oozing from the puncture marks made by the sharp thorns of the man-made crown he was forced to wear. The mixture of blood, dust and sweat had matted his hair and left jagged streaks across his pain contorted facial features.
The spiked branches, hurriedly intertwined and twisted into a circular form of crown, had been rammed into position by the soldiers. They used a flat piece of timber for this task for fear of spiking their own fingers and to ensure their creative activity would be seen by those who witnessed their prisoner’s walk to the Hill of the Skull. It was all part of the effort to mock the so called ‘King of the Jews’.
As Jesus slowly made his way along the crowd lined streets of the city, he stumbled and fell. The huge wooden cross he was made to carry fell across his body, slamming into the crown of thorns on his head. The pain of the spikes moving in their entrenched position was considerable and he groaned as he was dragged upright to continue his journey. With all the activity surrounding this happening, no one noticed that one of the blood smeared thorns in Jesus’ crown had become dislodged from its cranial bed. The action of the cross falling on the intermeshed spiked branches that made up the crown had resulted in a thorn snapping from the branch and falling from the head of Jesus.
Each day we walk along behind Jesus on our own individual journey through life. We can play it cool and not get too involved in why we follow in the Son of Man’s footsteps or we can try and relate our journey to His.
Jesus, we know you suffered and died for us. Today we follow your pathway on our own journey. Often we are close enough to you to hear the jeers and blasphemy of those who are persecuting you. Often we want to reach out and protect you from the attacks of those who would put you to death, but we know, as your Father knew while you staggered up the hill of Calvery, you had to endure your suffering for us.
Jesus, the thorn that fell from your head never fell to the ground to be trampled on by us. It was picked up by the wind and has been blown among us as we trudge along behind you. Today we can often find the thorn embedded in one of our family or friend’s head. It pains them as it pained you. They seek a way out of their pain, often having tried many different avenues in the past without success.
Jesus, just as you reached out to Mary and the daughters of Jerusalem while on your journey, we ask that you reach out to our friends. Just as you plucked the cloth offered to you from the hands of your friends and left them a lasting image of yourself, so we ask you to pluck out the thorn that causes our friend’s pain. Allow them to see your hand in their healing so they might continue to praise you by telling others of your love.
Help us Jesus to recognise The Lost Thorn whenever it enters our individual lives, so we might continue to remember the sacrifices you have made for us. Help us also to reach out to you in our pain and know that by placing our trust in you, The Lost Thorn will once again be blown away by the wind of your Spirit.