We, too, know what it feels like to be alone. This year has taught us that lesson, again and again. When he felt alone, Jesus turned to his Father, God.
Think of someone you know who might be lonely (single parents, children, youth, residents in nursing homes, front line workers…) - take a paper clip to help you remember to pray for them.
Kneel or stand, and bring your loneliness, as Jesus did, to God in prayer.
2 - Chains (Kitchen Hallway)
Jesus was taken away bound. What weighs you down, hampers your steps, enslaves you? Name those things, especially the sins that have you trapped.
Add to one of the paper chains the name(s) of the things that have you bound.
3 - I AM (Gym – Cry Room Window)
Jesus uses the name God used with Moses, “I AM”, or Yahweh to describe himself. He’s telling the leaders that in that moment, they are speaking to God. They are furious with the impertinence, disbelieving his words.
What names would you use to describe how God has appeared to you? Write them down on the glass
4 - Kingdom (Foyer)
Jesus’ view of God’s kingdom is deeply upsetting to the religious leaders, who had different expectations. What should God’s kingdom be like? What are your expectations about how Jesus will rule? How can you be open to Jesus’ voice, not your own desires?
Look and see the difference, which cross reflects the most value to you? How do we still today unfairly judge base on appearance?
5 - Wash (Front Lawn West)
Pilate tried to absolve himself by washing his hands in water. He is claiming no part in Jesus’ execution, although he actually had the power to stop it. Think- when have you avoided responsibility, or looked away, when it was in your power to do something?
The water of our baptism is the power of God washing away our sins, both for bad things we have done and the good things we have left undone. As for God’s forgiveness. Then touch the water to your forehead and open your heart to receive his mercy.
6 - Crown (Front Lawn East)
Imagine being whipped, beaten, bruised, and stripped. Then imagine the mockery Jesus endured, the crown of thorns jammed down on his head. This is just the beginning of the torture inflicted upon him. What have you suffered in this past year? Jesus has been with you. How might you be with him?
Touch the crown of thorns, feel the sting, then take a "thorn" and remember He is with you in your suffering.
7 - Heavy (East Entrance of Sanctuary facing soccer fields)
The cross Jesus carried on his flayed back would have weighed 300lbs. What’s the heaviest thing you’ve ever carried? It might be a physical weight or something emotional, spiritual or relational.
What heaviness weighs on you today?
This large, heavy cross is not as heavy as the one Jesus carried… Lift the cross or the rock and feel the weight, Jesu carried this because he loves you.
8 - Outsider (Church Office Hallway)
Simon was an outsider, a person from far away, not involved in the events of Holy Week until the Romans made him carry the cross they would use to crucify Jesus.
How has someone helped you in your time of need? How might you help others?
Maybe write a letter to someone who needs a lift? Take a piece of paper and an envelope with you.
9 - Weep (Choir/Music Room)
Jesus comforts the mourning women, turning their focus to themselves and the world. What makes you weep? What sorrow in the world breaks your heart?
Write those laments down on the chalkboard. Who should stay on our hearts this season?
10 - Crucify (Hallway by East Overflow Room)
Take a nail, hold it in your hand. Imagine, though it’s hard, the nail being driven through Jesus’ hands, his feet, and pounded into the wood of the cross. Jesus knows what it means to suffer.
Take a nail with you; when you are in pain, in anguish even, you have a Savior who knows the depth of that agony. And who endured it for your sake.
11 - Remember (Foyer – round table)
Jesus has shown mercy to those who crucify him, asking God to forgive them. Now, he gives mercy to the repentant thief. This man, alone among the hundreds there that day, sees something nobody else does. Hanging there on the cross, he sees Jesus winning. “Remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” He's saying: "When victory is yours, would you remember me?"
Where do you need to trust and believe in Jesus’ victory even though others can’t see it?
Stand and look at the cross, can you see Jesus' victory?
12- Courage (Hallway by West Overflow Room)
Most of Jesus’ disciples are hiding behind as many locked doors as they can find. But the women, and one disciple, have the courage to stand at the foot of Jesus' cross. They are not ashamed to be with him, even in this darkest hour.
How might you stand with Jesus, even when it’s hard? In what spaces or times are you most hesitant to admit you follow Jesus? How could that change?
Take a Post-It Note and write down what causes you to hesitate or deny Jesus.
13 - Darkness (Seats on the East side of the Sanctuary)
Sit for a moment in the darkness of that day. On a shaken earth, under a shrouded sun. Meditate on God’s love for you. And the cost that Jesus paid.
Take a seat, close your eyes, listen to the music, and meditate on what you hear.
14 - Bury (Front steps of the Sanctuary)
Even on the darkest days, there is always hope. Jesus’ death is the beginning of God’s greatest victory. We are hopeless no more because of what was accomplished on Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
Light a candle before you go, signifying how Jesus gives you His light to carry out into the world.