In 2004 my daughter Alexis painted an abstract Stations of the Cross that she donated to the church. Walking the stations of the cross is a spiritual practice that lies far outside the Baptist tradition. This allowed her to take the tradition and morph it a bit to make it more meaningful for those of us unfamiliar with the practice. It has become and important part of my observance of Lent, beginning today with Ash Wednesday.
Here are a few of my favorite paintings from the stations along with the tradiional descriptor and the prayers Alexis wrote...
The 6th station is where Veronica wipes Jesus' face. The prayer that Alexis wrote to go with the station is: O Creator, remind me that though I am small, though I am insignificant in this vast universe, everything I do makes a difference. Show me that when I so much as smile to a person who is burdened, I can change the path of fate.
The 11th station is where Jesus is nailed to the cross. Prayer: Peel my prejudice away and open my arms that I may embrace all of my family on this world. It is tempting for me to take my anger out on others. Grant me strength to love and not to lash out. Make my hands those of healing and not those of hate.
The 14th Station is where Jesus is laid in the tomb. Prayer: When I want to keep my resources to myself, even though they would be used better elsewhere, drive me to give. Keep generosity at the foremost of my thoughts, the tip of my tongue and the ends of my fingers. Remind me that the gifts I give now come back one hundred-fold.
Traditionally the Stations end there... we include a 15th station as well - Resurrection! At Easter I'll add a post with that painting and the prayer.