Good Friday

Last night at the Good Friday service at our church, there was a moment–when Jim, about to give the benediction, urged people to leave silently and to consider the solemnity of Jesus’ death–when I realized that I have never celebrated Good Friday seriously. Not that I took it lightly, or that I haven’t valued Jesus’ sacrifice. It’s just that I’ve never paused on this particular day to enter in to the remembrance as if I were one of the disciples or women standing there at the cross–pausing for a moment to absorb the weight of death, before skipping on to the woohoo of the resurrection. I have a hard time thinking about Good Friday without it being completely rolled into the same parcel with the Resurrection, and therefore Good News.

I suppose there’s good and bad in this. I really do think it’s appropriate to always have the Resurrection in the next breath when you talk about the Crucifixion. But it would benefit my soul to slow down and take a good hard look at the Crucifixion. It’s part of Jerry Bridges’ “preach the Gospel to yourself daily”: if I don’t really grasp the depth of my sin, then I don’t really grasp the greatness of my salvation. In the same way, if I don’t really grasp the darkness and the suffering of Jesus’ death, I will not really rejoice as I ought at His Resurrection.

And this goes back to the perennial struggle of this life for most American Christians (well, for ME, at least)–taking the TIME to know Jesus, to talk with Him about how He wants my heart to be shaped. It’s about time.

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