“Gaze meditatively at Christ on the cross,” is a familiar suggestion during Ignatian retreats. Staring at death (literally or symbolically) may not be comfortable, but for the courageous, it can bring deeper meaning to life.
My Prayer & Invitation to Prayer
Focusing on receiving emotionally, rather than thinking or reflecting, let each of us gaze at the image of Christ on the cross for at least five minutes. May this time of prayer take us where God wills. (If you get stuck, blink your eyes, then try to identify at least two feelings that are present in your heart.)
“No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Jesus, John 15:13 NRSV
To Understand The Image Better
These images are of the crucifixion of Jesus in the small Crucifixion rose window in the south ambulatory at the Chartres Cathedral (1217-20) in France.
Other Posts in This Series On Praying with Images of Death
Introduction: Life and Death
Passion & Resurrection Window: Talking about Death
Suffering; Hanging On Before Letting Go; Goodbye
John the Evangelist Window: Considering Our Lives; Possibilities in Times of Grief; Consider This!
Magdalene Window: The Many Faces of Mourning; Grieving, Then and Now; Water: In Life & Death; Resurrection; The Importance of A Face; Welcome As A Blessing
The Glorification of the Virgin Window: Dying in Community; Your Soul; Carrying Death
The Saint Sylvester Window: Murder
The Anthony and Paul the Hermit Window: Seeing with More Than Your Eyes