Reflections of Our Savior

March 2015


Dear Members and Friends of Our Savior:

Conflict. Conflict abounds in the world, in life. Conflict is what draws us into our favorite books or movies-the good guy vs. the bad guy, the hero, the tragic loser, the scoundrel, the savior. But conflict isn't just the stuff of fiction. It's also the real life stories of drama and intrigue that arouse our interest and emotions. Conflict ... it draws us into the story so that we are more than casual spectators, but become participants, caught up in the emotion and struggle.

Nowhere is conflict more intense than in the real life, true account of our Savior Jesus' final journey-his journey to his cross. It is one conflict after another: betrayal, denial, accusations, condemnation, being forsaken, crucifixion. All represent "conflicts under the cross." That is the theme for our Midweek Lenten meditations this year, beginning today (February 25th). An area WELS pastor will come and share a message of conflict that our Savior endured on his way to his cross. We will see how Jesus overcame conflicts.

But where else does conflict exist? Conflict abounds in our lives and in lives around us. Sin is the cause of all conflict. Sin is the reason that we find it so hard to come to terms with conflict. It is why we are often so ill-equipped to handle the conflict that finds a ready path into our day-today lives.

There is a solution to our conflicts. There is a way that we can come to grips with conflict in our lives, in lives around us, and in our world. Be more than a casual spectator of Jesus on his way to his cross. Rather, go with your Savior in heart and mind and learn firsthand how he handled the conflicts he faced and endured, as the drama and struggle unfolds on the pages of Holy Scripture.

By our Savior's active and passive obedience---by the way he faced those who placed conflict before him---how he handled his betrayer, denier, accusers, those who called for his execution, and those who drove in the nails---all of this teaches us how to face conflict. All of this he did for us. He allowed all of this in order to be our Savior and rescue us from our conflict with the devil, the world around us, and our own sinful natures. Jesus handled all of the conflicts under his cross as the perfect and eternal Son of God---as our Savior and perfect substitute. He brought forgiveness: he gave forgiveness. He called for mercy: he showed mercy. He spoke of obedience: he was obedient to his Father's will.

He faced and overcame all conflict-his and ours.

Pastor Johnson