Christ died for you and me

- Francis J. Kong - The Philippine Star

Maybe I am a poet at heart. It was easy for me to compose poems during my high school days. In college I joined our school’s newspaper staff and worked as a reporter. Then I became news editor, and then I became editor-in-chief. Strange, but the poet within me disappeared. The vacuum was filled by hard-hitting factual straight-to-the-point no-nonsense all-business news reporting.

But every now and then I would come across a beautiful poem that tugs at my heartstrings and hugs my heart, and this is one material I would like to share with you.

The poem is Christ Died for You and Me by Alice Olson.

Listen to the words, and you will never see Lent the same way.

I know that I shall never see

A man who loves as much as Thee.

My God you gave up your own Son

For to ransom everyone! 

Oh what ugly wounds He bore!

Ahead, He knew what was in store.

First they bruised Him savagely.

This was for our iniquity. 

With lashing reeds they did attack,

And tore the flesh right off His back!

A crown of thorns did pierce His brow.

The pain of it was awful now! 

A soldier’s sword did pierce His side,

And water and blood from there did glide.

It seemed as if He’d met defeat,

When they nailed to the cross His hands and feet. 

The words of Jesus from the cross

Speak of His love for all of us.

As they drove the nails, this will speak to you!

He cried “Father, forgive, they don’t know what they do” 

His mother was standing close to John.

With concern He told her, “Behold your son.”

A thief on the cross realized his sin,

And Jesus said “Today paradise you’ll win!” 

His tongue was parched. He said “I thirst.”

And vinegar was what they gave Him first.

Then darkness fell and the earth was shaken.

Jesus cried “God, Why am I forsaken?”

When He said, “It is finished” Redemption was complete.

This really was not for Him a defeat.

Christ’s death was God’s best of master plans.

Now he committed His spirit into God’s hands.

Yes our Savior died upon a tree

But He rose again victoriously.

In his suffering and death He bore our sin,

Eternal life for us to win 

Lord you gave yourself for me

And now I give myself to thee.

Teach me each day what I should do

To help others to know you, too.

 On one occasion Michelangelo turned to his fellow artists and said with frustration in his voice, “Why do you keep filling gallery after gallery with endless pictures on the one theme of Christ in weakness, Christ on the cross, and most of all, Christ hanging dead?” he asked. “Why do you concentrate on the passing episode as if it were the last work, as if the curtain dropped down there on disaster and defeat? That dreadful scene lasted only a few hours. But to the unending eternity Christ is alive; Christ rules and reigns and triumphs!”

Michelangelo was right. Even though the cross is vitally important because of the redemption Jesus accomplished for us there, we must not emphasize His death to the exclusion of His resurrection victory. We should think of Him now in His glorified state in heaven.

But you and I still need to remember this very important point: there is no Easter or Resurrection Sunday without Calvary.

(Francis teams up with renowned speaker and author Krish Dhanam on May 15 in a whole day seminar entitled Achieving Peak Performance at the EDSA Shangri-La Hotel. For further details contact Inspire at 09158055910 or call (632) 6310912).










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