I find myself staring at this computer screen feeling this wave of emotion run over me. Exhaustion, hope, elation, sorrow, and thanksgiving in each shift of the current.
When I woke up this morning there were clouds in the sky and this heavy darkness that seemed to nestle into the trees. A cool breeze swept through and I found myself staring into the the wind just watching, observing. It was then that I made the connection of the day, It is Good Friday.
Don’t get me wrong, I have known Good Friday was this week, but each day (as I’m sure you can relate to) kind of bleeds into the other right now and it took a few minutes for the sleep to escape and for truth to settle in.
Today is the day we observe the death of Jesus.
It’s no wonder I felt this weight creeping through the morning, the weight of wondering, thinking, attempting to understand what all Jesus may have felt as He was nailed to a cross and marked for my (and your) mistakes (sins). Far too often I gloss over this part because there is victory on the other side with the resurrection, but I truly believe we need to rest in what Good Friday is. It’s a day of remembrance, a day of reflection, a day of sorrow, and ultimately a day of thanks.
I’m reminded of the first part of this verse as I ponder on Good Friday:
“Later knowing that everything had now been finished…”
– John 19:28a (NIV)
He knew what He would endure. He knew the torture, the abuse, the judgement, the abandonment, the betrayal. He knew it all. He knew it all and He still said yes, He still chose us, and He would do it all again.
Here we sit in a season of unknown.
A season where we are faced daily with uncertainty, fear, not understanding and often full of questions and concern. We look for answers, we find camaraderie in our neighbors and family and friends, we seek out ways to help or ways to be helped. Yet we still sit with questions waiting for answers and doing our best to remain calm and hopeful.
Yet I know I am not alone in those moments when the unknown crashes around like a tidal wave. When I can’t seem to make sense of the sadness for my fellow man who have lost loved ones, who have lost their jobs, who are afraid of having enough food or money or medicine. It can turn into this cycle of terror over this COVID-19 pandemic.
And yet, Jesus knew.
He knew, He walked before us, He prepared the way, He offers hope, He endured it all and more and the worst, He knew the horror He would face and He walked towards it with hope and faith and trust in the certainty of God and who He is and what He has done, is doing, and will do ahead. He was supported by friends, abandoned by friends, and then restored in friendship. Did you see that, He was restored. Not just in friendship but in a healthy body. He was restored to life.
He still knows.
He is always present and the comfort that comes with that is more reassuring than any news article, word of encouragement, or new scientific study.
It’s Good Friday friends.
A day to remember it all and to be reminded that Jesus knew, and still chose the cross, still chose death, still chose us over Himself…and would do it all again. The good news on this Good Friday is that it doesn’t end there.
Jesus was restored.
Jesus rose again.
Jesus is with us, always.