Its been bothering me awhile that, as a devout Christian, I've not been able to find a whole lot of meaning in the crucifixion. In fact, I've seen it as a passive-aggressive. It seems to say, "I love you so much that I let this happen to me, to forgive your sins, you unworthy, despicable creatures. Now you better do what I tell you." Pathetic, huh? But what can you do when this is your honest view of the hallmark of your religion? I was not lead to go to another religion; I wanted to solve the riddle. Seriously, I love Jesus and I'm not giving him up just because I have a pea-brain.
I've read about how the crucifixion might be viewed as the importance of dying to the self, to leaving behind egoism so that one might grow to become a more Christ-like person, thinking of and loving others in a way that is impossible when one focuses on themselves. This is a helpful view, but it doesn't get me past my block.
Anyway, I am feeling incredibly thankful for an understanding I recently received. I've been talking to a dear friend about an issue that is the source of suffering. As usual, I approach it in my own extremely self-centered desire to be helpful. Its finally occurring to me that perhaps I should wish for help for others, not that I can be of help to others.
How does one get past the pain they have suffered? I don't have an answer, but I now see the crucifixion as hope that it can be done. Jesus suffered terrible humiliation, pain and death at the hands of those who mocked him. Jesus leaned on his relationship with God to be able to endure it, so I guess thats a clue for us. Purportedly, the crucifixion happened so our sins can be forgiven. But also in his crucifixion, I can see that its about accepting the pain and suffering and forgiving it. Once that is done, then the resurrection can occur, the new life that is not hampered by the memories and anger of the past.
How is this done in real life? I don't know, but at least I'm not longer attributing personality disorders to my Savior.