I can hardly fathom, hanging on a cross in immense torment and agony, dying, but then crying out, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” (Luke 23:46). What absolute trust. What absolute surrender.
Jesus was quoting Psalm 31:5. Just listen to the beginning of that Psalm: “In you, O Lord, do I take refuge; let me never be put to shame; in your righteousness deliver me! Incline your ear to me; rescue me speedily! Be a rock of refuge for me, a strong fortress to save me! For you are my rock and my fortress; and for your name’s sake you lead me and guide me; you take me out of the net they have hidden for me, for you are my refuge. Into your hand I commit my spirit; you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God.”
We know how the story ends so this statement may not seem as powerful as it really was. Having seen the end, we know Jesus was wise to commit His spirit into the Father’s hands. He was going to be resurrected on the third day. He was going to be delivered. But thing of this from the stand point of hanging on the cross. Think of this from the standpoint of being in the midst of the separation of the Father. How hard it must have been to look at the big picture of where all this would lead when distracted by the intense agony both physically and spiritually. Yet, Jesus trusted the Father.
I need to learn this kind of trust. Letting God be my refuge doesn’t mean I’ll never suffer. It means I know God will use it for good and I trust His knowledge of the big picture of my life, the lives around me, and eternity.
This helps me knowing that God if God is letting me go through some suffering, He has His reasons that will be for my good in the long run. When I actually have this concept firmly in my mind and heart, it produces a peace that passes understanding. I don’t have to live in fear that something awful might happen. If it does, I can know that God is working. He is my refuge. He is my stronghold. He is my deliverer. Instead of taking my spirit into my own hands, I can commit it into the hands of my loving, faithful Creator who really does have my best intentions at heart.
I’m going to make this prayer of Jesus a regular prayer for me, especially if I’m in the midst of something that I don’t like.
Father, into your hands, I commit my spirit.
Keep the faith and keep reading,
P.S. What struck you in today’s reading?