||The Lenten Window|
The beautifully detailed, dominant image of Jesus as the Lamb of God (John 1:29) serves to offer up a refreshing alternate view of the season of Lent. Often Lent is celebrated as a very austere, solemn time during which the focus is on the horrors of Jesus' suffering and shameful death on the cross.
Yet the mood of the Johannine Jesus is much different. In the gospel Jesus is portrayed as ever majestic in life and death. The expression on the Lamb's face is one of serene, almost joyous confidence that because He has completed the work the Father sent Him to do, that is, to reveal God's Light in the dark chaos of the world (John 17:4) that the Father will glorify Him by returning Jesus back to His bosom (John 1:18).
In John, through Jesus' death on the cross He draws all people to Himself (John 3:14-15) so that they might enjoy life eternal and bask in the gift of peace which the Risen Jesus bestows upon His People (John 20:19, 21).
In an added touch to the original design, the Fudaleys added the detail of the Lamb standing on a rock. While they meant only to fill in a gap in the window, they actually added significant theological expression. For throughout the Old Testament, God is referred to as a "Rock" (Deuteronomy 32:4, 32:18; 2 Samuel 22:2; Psalm 18:2; 19:14). By showing the Lamb resting its foot upon the rock, this gives witness to Jesus' absolute trust in the Father to deliver Him from death and return Him to glory at the Father's side (John 17:5).
The foot also almost seems to be ready to push the
rock aside, foreshadowing the rolling away of the rock sealing the tomb at
the Resurrection, and seamlessly moving us from one season of the Church
year to the next.