Jesus, crucified between two thieves. An innocent squeezed between guilt. It’s not just the guilt of those two thieves that presses in on him; it’s our guilt, the guilt of a world that pierces like a sword.
More than love holds Jesus to the cross. He’s held to that wood by a willingness to be lower than low. He chooses humiliation. They mock him. And don’t you just want to see Jesus put them in their place? But he doesn’t. He has opportunity, but only the pathway of humility will lead to everlasting life.
Are you squeezed in? Are you pierced? More than love will hold you to the course of your Savior. A lowliness. We all traverse various places of humiliation, and in those moments, will we scramble off his cross, or will we take it up, as he has asked of us?
The place of humility is not always comfortable, but it is necessary. It was necessary for Jesus, for the conquering of death and the delivering of us fully into grace. It is necessary for us, his followers.