Tag Archives: crucifixion

Lent 39: Good Friday

Good Friday from Ramanand Dao small

Blackness of sky, redness of agony, bloodied sun, cracking clouds.  There is no doubt to anyone who has ever stood at the foot of this dark shape, looking on this tortured man in perfect obedience, that this is the centre of the universe. Here is the fulcrum of history and the turning point in all relationships. This is where the questions are asked and you are never found wanting, unlike those who have fled but will return. The women, and the man who loves you, becoming a new family at your nailed feet, churched by the anguish of love.

Art and text © Keren Dibbens-Wyatt 2018

5: Broken Pottery

kintsugi Jusben MF

“I am forgotten as though I were dead; I have become like broken pottery.”

Psalm 31:12 NIV

One of the worst things we can feel as human beings is the dejection of thinking we are unusable, that we are broken beyond any hope. That our destiny is only to be cast aside and discarded without thought. There are many situations that can bring us to this place of desolation: losing a spouse, divorce, redundancy, sudden illness or disability. Sometimes the realisation that we are no longer valued comes more slowly, with the silence of a long-time friend, a marriage falling irretrievably apart, a child who no longer calls. Perhaps it is still subtler than that. Loss of looks, an awareness that our academic credentials are out of date, a falling out of favour.

Whatever causes it, we feel like a jar that has not only been left at the back of the cupboard with a rapidly approaching use by date, but pushed so far out of reach that it has fallen off the shelf and shattered, and worse still, that no-one even heard the crash.

But here is a hopeful thought. This phrase is from the Psalm that Jesus chose to reference at the very time of his death. “Into your hands I commit my Spirit…” is how verse five begins. This song is interspersed with a whole gamut of emotions, stretched to the utmost. It talks of great suffering and injustice, but also of trusting the Lord. Was ever anyone as broken or stretched as Jesus on the cross? Flogged, scourged, spat on, tormented, taunted, crucified, betrayed, deserted, ridiculed, weighed down with all the darkness of history, and worse still, forsaken. And a second question, which must follow. If Jesus had not been so broken, would the bread, his body broken for us, have any power?

If this wholeness through brokenness to transformed wholeness is the journey that our Lord lived and died to show us, might we not take heart that our own broken pieces might yet be gathered up and used to feed thousands, with basketfuls left over?

©Keren Dibbens-Wyatt

Photo from Morguefile.com of a pot mended using the Japanese art of Kintsugi, gold used to fuse the broken pieces back together.

192: Place of Skulls

192 golgotha edouardo MF

Three prongs of a wooden pitchfork await us then, after the long and bloody climb that births a new pilgrimage. Flesh already shredded, hanging limp, needing lifting. A mock rising, a thorny gehenna, human refuse disposed of along with God’s golden boy. No longer any separation between the holy of holies and the thieving murderers, the wheat and the tares burn together, and the incense that rises opens the gates of heaven and hell, and all is let loose, so that even the moon burns and the sun melts and the curtain is unseamed.

Everything falls apart here, and the unexpectedness of its totality catches the enemy unawares, open mouthed, jaw in another dimension. All history transfixed by this pivot of pained perfection, in which everything is held together, in this eternal, beautiful, brokenness.


© Keren Dibbens-Wyatt 2016

Photo from morguefile.com