Daddy, Why? OR
The Crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ, Our Savior
Story Idea by Bishoy A. Michael
Written by Youstina Guirguis
It’s Friday. I like Fridays. It means I get to rest tomorrow; it will be the Sabbath day. My parents told me that because God commanded us to rest on the Sabbath day, we cannot do anything at all. The Sabbath day is solely dedicated to God. That meant that my father had to finish his errands today. He allowed me to accompany him.
We headed out early in the morning. As we walked along the side of the road and my father went in and out of buildings, taking care of various matters, I noticed that the streets were busier than usual. There were many people standing outside of their homes as if they were waiting for something coming their way. Some people went about their normal business, others simply stood, waiting. Of the ones who waited, many had malicious looks on their faces. Others looked upset and had horrified looks on their faces. My curiosity was aroused and I desired to know exactly what these people were waiting for. Why did some look so eager and spiteful? What were the others scared of?
I looked at my father. For the first time since we left our house, I noticed that there was something bothering him. I inquired of my father what the reason for the presence of these people was and why they appeared the way they did. My father absentmindedly told me not to worry about it and we continued along, my father trying to finish up his errands as quickly as possible. I knew then that what these people were waiting for was indeed so terrible that my father wanted to get us out of there as quickly as possible, before it happened.
My father walked into the last place he needed to run errands in. While my father spoke to the man in charge of the place, I examined my surroundings. This man was something like an apothecary; he had many different vials and flasks filled with liquids, herbs, and other things of the sort. As I took note of all this, there were sudden shouts outside and people scrambled to see what was going on. I saw my father’s shoulders tense as he heard the commotion outside. Naturally, the storekeeper went outside to see what was happening. My father followed reluctantly and I crept out behind them. I slipped in between the crowd in front of me and peered out, trying to get a glimpse of what was happening.
Coming down the road, there was a Man in a tattered and bloodstained garment. He had a crown of thorns on His head and He was carrying a cross. As He came closer, I could see what was happening better. His face was contorted with pain and tears fell from His swollen eyes. The soldiers beat Him as they shoved Him forward. He fell and His garment slid a bit off His shoulder, revealing deep cuts and wounds. The crown of thorns atop His head dug deep into His flesh and large drops of blood fell from where they pierced His forehead and sides of His face. I wept; I perceived that this was Jesus, the Man my father and I went regularly to the synagogue to hear. One of the people next to me, a man, grabbed the edge of His garment that was falling off His shoulder and pulled Him up. Then, he spit in Jesus’ face. Jesus didn’t say anything as the spittle slowly moved down his cheeks mingling with His tears and blood.
The soldiers relentlessly beat Him, even when He fell. Everyone was cruel to Him and I did not know why. He was a gentle Man who spoke comforting words. I could not understand the hostility I saw in their eyes. As Jesus continued walking down the road, He fell once more, this time right next to where I was standing. Another person spit in His face and I reached down with my handkerchief to wipe it away. A menacing Roman soldier pushed me back and roughly shoved Jesus along the path. I was terrified. What was going to be His fate? Why was He carrying a cross and where were they leading Him? I could not stop crying; I pitied Him because of what the soldiers and the people around me did to Him.
I felt a hand on my shoulder as the crowd thinned and followed the soldiers and Jesus. I looked up through my tears and saw my father.
“Father, where are they taking Him? Can’t you do anything to help Him? He didn’t do anything!” I pleaded with my father.
“These are troubled times, my child. We cannot do anything. They have sentenced Him to death,” my father replied.
With that, my father and I walked home, each of us lost in deep thought about what we had just witnessed. The walk back to our home seemed to take a very long time. When we reached our home, my father told my mother what we had seen. I stood in the window and looked out. In the distance, atop a hill, I saw three crosses. The tears spilled from my eyes, as I knew that Jesus was crucified on one of them. Again, questions crept into my head. Why did He have to die like a criminal? What had He done to deserve all of this?
I stood some time in the window looking out at that hill and thinking. Suddenly, it got very dark. I was close to my parents and I clung to both of them. I heard cries coming from our neighbors’ houses. Everyone was alarmed that it was dark. The sun was supposed to be shining bright and hot just about this time and yet there was darkness all around. What could be the meaning of this? The darkness lasted for three hours. Then there was an earthquake and someone was running in the middle of the street telling everyone that the veil in the temple was torn in half! I couldn’t believe it! The veil was so thick; how could it simply be torn in half on its own? Other people said they saw dead people rise from their graves and rocks splitting! I tried to put all these events together and come up with an explanation and could not. These were all extraordinary things!
I looked at my father questioningly. I was surprised that he had a calm but melancholy look on his face.
“Father, what is the meaning of all this? Why are all these things happening?” I asked.
“The Son of God has died my child. The Son of God has died. How can nature not lament and mourn His death?” my father replied.
“But father, why did He have to die? What did He do wrong?” I asked once more.
“He came for you and me, dearest one. He said: ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.’ Did you not hear Him say so? He is the long-awaited Messiah who came to save us,” my father said.
“But they killed him father!” I cried.
“Indeed they did child. But we must have faith. Did you not also hear Him speak many times and prophecy that He will be crucified, die, and rise again after three days? Have hope, my child. He will rise again.”
I looked out the window of our home once again and looked into the distance at the crosses on the hill. My father’s words rang in my ears. “He will rise again.” I started to get drowsy and eventually I fell into a deep sleep after gazing once more at the crosses at the top of the hill and willing myself to believe in my father’s words…“we must have faith…have hope, my child…He will rise again.”