In the Old Testament reading for today we hear the words, probably of the prophet himself, of one who endures all kinds of harm without returning harm in turn, waiting for the Lord to vindicate him. One can't read this without thinking of Jesus, quietly enduring "such contradiction of sinful people" as he made his way ultimately to the cross. Why would he do that? What did it accomplish?
Among other things, enduring the worst that sin could bring against him and returning only grace, enduring a painful, suffering death, Jesus walked the path we all have to walk. In this life we will suffer because of sin. In this life we will endure pain and eventually death. What can help us through is to know that we have one who has endured it all who walks that path with us.
Let us pray.
God who loves us enough to walk our path of suffering before us and with us, we thank you for Jesus, who showed us how to walk with you, even in the times when it's hardest. We thank you for these symbols of bread and cup that remind us of his suffering and death and his presence with us even now.
As we take the bread and cup, renew your Spirit in us that we can carry the message of you who loves us so dearly into the world that needs so much to hear it.
In the name of Jesus our Christ,