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Daily Reading: 2nd February 2016

John 19. 17-18

17 And carrying His own cross He went out to a place called ‘of the skull’, which in Hebrew is called Golgotha.  

18 where they crucified Him, and with Him two others, one on either side of Him, with Jesus in the middle. 

These days there is a lot of talk about stress. It seems to have become a major player in the world of today. With it has grown up an industry of ‘professional’ careers, and counsellors etc., who seek to help those who are suffering stress in some form or another. It is sad to say that sometimes those who suffer stress get to what is known as ‘breaking point’, when suddenly they suffer a breakdown in some form or another.

We often say that this is a point described as the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

We must not under-estimate the stress that others face, realizing that we all have different levels of anxiety and breaking points.

Jesus must have been under a stress that no-one had ever known, nor would ever know.

He had been flogged to within an inch of death (many would not have survived a Roman flogging). His back was laid bare and He had to carry a rough wooden cross on it. From the other gospels we know that He had the assistance of Simon of Cyrene.

We also know that He had the torment of knowing He faced the battle to defeat the devil and death. He also knew that within a short space of time He was to face separation from His Father.

If anyone had a straw that would break the camel’s back, it was Jesus, and He went through all of this for you and me. So great is His love for the whole world.

Jesus was taken beyond the walls of Jerusalem and crucified in a place called Golgotha (skull). It was so called because the place looked like a human skull.

The Jews and the Romans removed Jesus from the hub and centre of Jerusalem; they killed Him, thinking they had rid themselves of someone who was a disturbance to their way of living.

This is just what the world does today. It removes Jesus from their way of life, because He disturbs them by His righteousness. This is a reason why stress levels increase within people.

Whenever we feel stressed let our first action be to make Jesus the focus of our life.

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