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Jesus is stripped of his clothing

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Jesus is stripped of his clothing

Tenth Station

The soldiers need to work quickly now and so they pull and tear at our Lord’s clothing simply to get the job done… but then, finding an object of value to them, they pause before removing his undergarment.  ‘Let’s not tear it,’ they say to one another, ‘let’s decide by lot who will get it.’  The pleased lot-winner then eagerly starts to pull it off over Jesus’ head, but it sticks: the pressure of the cross on Jesus’ back and shoulders has made the garment adhere to his torn flesh.  The soldier grimaces, then swiftly strips away the remainder.

 

We know how to present ourselves to others well enough, yet we know too what we’re truly like and what we keep hidden.  Jesus, the Sinless One felt no need to put on a face or make himself appear to be someone he was not, for he had nothing to hide.  He was authentically holy; the same person on the outside as on the inside; the same in the home as in the market place or the synagogue.  In our lifelong journey towards God, we continually remove obstacles that stand between us.  However, like Jesus’ undergarment, the hidden sins – like envy, pride, resentment, impure or uncharitable thoughts – are delightful to the enemy and are most difficult to remove.

 

My Lord Jesus, you know me better than I know myself… and yet you love me.  Inspired by this knowledge, I yearn to become evermore worthy of your great love.  Sometimes, I can be deluded into seeing myself as others see me, overlooking my faults and failings which are hidden by my outward appearance.  Grant me the grace to see and confess those hidden sins that adhere so stubbornly to my soul.  Strip me of those sins, that I may draw ever closer to you, my Lord and my God.

 

I love Thee, Jesus; my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart of having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always,
and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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