These final days leading up to Easter, we’ve continued to open the Easter Story Eggs and read the related passages from the Gospels.
This week in our reading, we came across another critical moment in the story that’s not represented in the egg collection. So, to enrich the journey, we added a symbol in another egg and inserted it directly after the praying hands.
This time, we added a rooster.
(Playing the part of the rooster this Easter season is a Playmobil hen. We have a Playmobil rooster somewhere, but this will do for now.)
Just after Jesus was betrayed by Judas with a kiss, the Lord was led away to the house of the chief priest. The disciples split up and abandoned Jesus, though Peter hung around in the courtyard, keeping a low profile. But people started to recognize him. Peter denied it when the first person pointed out that Peter was with Jesus. He denied it a second time, as well.”Certainly this fellow was with him,” a third person said, “for he is a Galilean.”Peter replied, “Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!”Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed.The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.This moment…I know it’s coming not only because I read it year after year, but because the Lord Himself warned Peter that it was coming. Still, it slices through me.
I don’t know him! I don’t know what you’re talking about!The cock crows.And the Lord turns and looks straight at Peter.
And I sit in my kitchen with a set of plastic eggs and a small brown hen sitting on the table.I stare at it, thinking…praying…wondering.
At the moment of denial: eye contact.Bitter tears.And Jesus left to walk the final steps to Calvary alone.
This is just one of many moments leading to the Cross.And these are the days to think on these moments. This is the week to ponder these reminders of the Lord’s suffering.And I am lingering as long as I can.Simply.Slowly.Quietly.