31st August

For a Northern Crucifixion

But the Lord made the punishment fall on him, the punishment all of us deserved. Isaiah 53: 6

Himself to himself offering
The dying God becomes
Brother to reed and thorn.

The lash unmakes him,
Bearer of the tree; he bears also
The inner wounds of scorn.

He learns death’s lore.
To unlock this dark chamber:
Five potent wounds in the flesh,
On hand, foot, flank.

Himself, himself abandoning,
He sings, dry as stone –
A desolate cry, sweeter than lark-song.

Last fires consume him.
And the surge from below the oceans’ floor
Carries him, vessel of sorrow, Father-ward.
David Alston Dean and Chapter of Durham Cathedral

How different our lives would be if we could see that sin is not just a collision with the divine will, but a wound in the divine heart.
Selwyn Hughes

Nothing in my hand I bring
Simply to your Cross I cling
Naked, come to you for dress
Helpless, look to you for grace
Foul I to the fountain fly
Wash me Saviour or I die.
A.M. Toplady