on the Cross. 8 comments


{pre-written during pregnancy post}

It is two weeks away from Holy Week as I write this and I’m already sad for Holy Week. Sad, not so much because it is Holy Week, but because I’ll likely be missing it. I’m torn this year in a way I never thought I would be. I love Holy Week. It sounds a bit odd, I know, to love something so utterly barren and somber, but I do. Holy Week liturgies are my favorite liturgies of the year. The Chrism Mass at the Cathedral with more priests than I can count. Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper and the washing of the feet. Good Friday, oh Good Friday – the highlight, at least in my opinion, of Holy Week. Good Friday tugs at my heart strings, rips me open and reminds me of the depths of His love for us. Then comes Holy Saturday in its utter silence, the waiting, the watching, the unknown of what is to come. I could cry a pregnant lady cry (trust me, they aren’t so pretty) at the thought of missing all of this.

Why am I missing it? Because by time Holy Week gets here I’ll either be doing jumping jacks in a feeble attempt to get Monkey out, or I’ll be holding my sweet new daughter. The thought of holding her brings tears to my eyes, too, don’t misunderstand me. I’m so very excited to meet her, to see her sweet face and hold her close to me. Honestly, if she’s already born by time Holy Week gets here (and you are reading this), then on one level, I probably won’t mind. She’ll be my world, my waking and my sleeping, my raison d’être and the liturgies will come and go as beautiful as ever, whether I’m there to participate in them or not. But still, those liturgies are such a powerful time in our faith, such profound moments of introspection and reflection.

Either way – newborn baby here yet or not – there will be a cross to carry this year. The cross of still. being. pregnant. or the cross of sleepless nights, endless feeding and diaper changes and the joys and trials of being a new parent. In a simple way, those are my crosses this year. His cross, however, never changes. He daily walks the road to Calvary. He is daily whipped and spat upon, mocked and jeered at for you and for me. Whether I’m praying that Monkey will just be born already or holding her in my arms, His road remains the same, the same sacrifice as always. His sacrifice, His cross is just as beautiful as ever.

I also know that I see the cross through different eyes this year. I see it as a mother and I understand Mary in a completely new light. The intensity of this week weighs on me more profoundly than ever before as I imagine what Mary must have experienced watching her Son suffer as He did. I’ve never really thought about it all through her eyes, through her heart before. What a miracle it is that she didn’t die of a broken heart as she watched Jesus endure all that He endures this week. So it is that the cross never changes but our perspective on it does. With our changing perspective we find new richness to be drawn from it, new ways in which to approach our faith, and a new depth to which we understand God’s deep love for us.

How does your perspective on the cross change? Do you understand His sacrifice differently this year than in years past? 

May your Holy Week – however you experience it – be blessed, rich, deep and filled with His great love for you.

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8 thoughts on “on the Cross.

  • Laurel Muff (@Muffin_Dome)

    How funny to see missing Holy Week as a cross….but it is! I do miss attending and participating in the Liturgy like I used to. The crosses of motherhood are so different than pre-motherhood, but have a certain sweetness to them at times. Mary is definitely a good example to look to when trying to carry them well.

    • Amanda @ worthy of Agape

      Mary is teaching me so much! I never really imagined that missing things (especially being as introverted as I can be) to be a cross, but it can be! Motherhood is a different thing altogether – beautiful and challenging and sanctifying to be sure 🙂

  • Cat W.

    Well this hit home for me, as I sit here on day 2 of possible labor but possibly not labor. Easter is my favorite holiday, and embracing Holy Week obviously helps prepare my heart for the immense joy of Christ’s victory over death. But I may not make it to any triduum services this year, and I guess I just need to embrace that this year..

  • Megan

    I’m sure since she is officially in your arms you you feel the weight of “missing” Holy Week and Mother Mary’s grief even more acutely. I think that was the hardest adjustment for me as a Catholic mother. I used to be free to go to adoration and confession weekly if I wanted (and I did), I could go to Stations of the Cross every Lenten Friday, I could go to the Triduum without anyone stopping me but myself…and even more of a change–I could listen to the readings and the homily, remember at least half of it, without kids or pregnancy brain making it impossible to focus. It was gaining my vocation but losing so much of the part of my faith that made me feel “fed” if that makes sense. It is slowly getting easier (yay Cathso and meetups!) and I’m getting more brave about bringing kids along, and today I stopped by the church with Marie since she’s still on spring break and we did stations together. But an adjustment, for sure. Hopefully working at a church you’ll have an easier time of it, but all that nostalgia to say I get it, and I’ll be praying for you as you grow into this role and all that it means! Also, Miss Monkey is a very lucky daughter! 🙂

    • Amanda @ worthy of Agape

      Such sweet words, thank you! It’s all different now, not in a way I would change, but in a way that will need some adjusting to! Even Easter Mass…there was a homily, but she was too adorable as she slept and wiggled in her car seat that I can’t really tell you what the homily was about. That doesn’t mean Mass was less beautiful, just that my prayer was focused around the new life in front of me 😉

  • Jen

    Daniel was a Holy Week 2009 baby. I think this year might be the first since 2008 when I’ve gotten to do Ash Wednesday and every service of Holy Week (except Easter Vigil).