Summary: The three words "I Am Thirsty" speak volumes to us today.
Intro: Easter is almost here. Two more weeks and it will be upon us. We have spent the last several weeks looking at the cross of Jesus and the last words of our Savior on that cross. This morning we are going to look at the shortest saying as they are called.
. I want to start this pre Easter sermon this morning with a Christmas story.
. The story is called The Christmas Storm and it was written by Paul Harvey.
. "This is about a modern man, one of us, he was not a scrooge, he was a kind, decent, mostly good man, generous to his family, upright in his dealings with others. But he did not believe in all that incarnation stuff that the Churches proclaim at Christmas time. It just didn’t make sense to him and he was too honest to pretend otherwise. He just could not swallow the Jesus story about God coming to earth as man. I’m truly sorry to distress you, he told his wife, but I’m not going with you to church this Christmas Eve. He said he’d feel like a hypocrite. That he would much rather stay home, but that he would wait up for them. He stayed, they went. Shortly after the family drove away in the car, snow began to fall. He went to the window to watch the flurries getting heavier and heavier, then went back to his fireside chair and began to read his newspaper. Minutes later he was startled by a thudding sound. Then another and another. At first he thought someone must be throwing snowballs against his living room window. Well, when he went to the front door, he found a flock of birds huddled miserably in the snow. They had been caught in the storm and in a desperate search for shelter they had tried to fly through his large landscape window. Well, he couldn’t let the poor creatures lie there and freeze. He remembered the barn where his children stabled their pony. That would provide a warm shelter -- if he could direct the birds to it. He quickly put on his coat and galoshes, trampled through the deepening snow to the barn, opened the door wide, and turned on a light. But the birds did not come in. He figured food would entice them in and he hurried back to the house, fetched bread crumbs, sprinkled them on the snow making a trail to the yellow lighted wide open doorway of the stable, but to his dismay the birds ignored the bread crumbs, and continued to flap around helplessly in the snow. He tried catching them, he tried shooing them into the barn by walking around them waving his arms -- instead they scattered in every direction except into the warm lighted barn. Then he realized they were afraid of him. To them, he reasoned, I am a strange and terrifying creature, if only I could think of some way to let them know they can trust me. That I’m not trying to hurt them, but to help them. How? Any move he made tended to frighten them, confuse them. They just would not follow. They would not be led or shooed because they feared him. If only I could be a bird myself he thought. If only I could be a bird and mingle with them and speak their language, and tell them not to be afraid, and show them the way to the safe, warm barn. But I'd have to be one of them, so they could see and hear and understand.
At that moment the church bells began to ring. The sound reached his ears above the sound of the wind. He stood there listening to the bells. And he sank to his knees in the snow.
. He finally understood that for mankind to believe that God loved them and understand them that He had to come to them as one of them.
. In order for mankind to trust Him, He had to show them that He was willing to experience what man experiences.
. There is an old American Indian proverb that says in order to know a man, you must first “walk a mile in his moccasins”.
. Jesus not only walked that mile, He lived and experienced the joys and heartache of His creation in order to show His love for us.
. In our scripture this morning, we see the humanity of Jesus.
. Jesus had been nailed to the cross at nine am and sometime between then and noon he spoke His first words since being crucified.
. He asked God to forgive those who were crucifying Him when He said “Father forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34).