A Prologue. . .
What can we say about Good Friday, that hasn’t already been said? Or not said because we don’t know what to say!
Truth be known, speaking or writing about a day in which a man willingly went to a horrific death because it was His purpose is not something most humans can do with any intellectual certainty. Not that we don’t believe it happened. But that we can’t comprehend anyone doing such a thing for any earthly reason under the sun.
That’s just the point, it wasn’t an earthly reason. It was the fulfillment of the Father’s plan since the beginning of time. It was a matter of the Spirit. And our finite human minds cannot wrap our brains around something so deeply spiritual and ‘Personal‘ to the Father of humankind!
So I pulled the following post from the 2017 Good Friday blog which is how in my limited understanding I can wrap my brain around Good Friday being good at all. . .
It was a good day!
I’ve always wondered why it’s called “Good Friday”! After all, a man hung on a cross in the hot Middle Eastern sun for three long hours before death mercifully came to claim him. How can that be “good”?
The other side of the question is how selfish it is for us to call it “Good Friday”. It’s good because we are the beneficiaries of what He did on our behalf.
Think of the Lord of Lords hanging in the hot Middle Eastern sun trying desperately to breath while crying out to a Heavenly Father who seems to have abandoned Him. I shudder when I think of what He must have endured. And I can’t truly comprehend the fact that what He did; He did for me. Once and for all!
The price of love. . .
It was done out of love. A love none of us can truly understand.
There are times in life when we are exceedingly altruistic. When we do deeply loving things about which we don’t count the cost. We simply do them because something deep in our hearts tells us it’s the right thing to do.
We reach out to another who is hurting and the words we utter bring healing, strength and courage. We go out of our way to meet the needs of someone we barely know because it simply “feels right“. We dig deep in our pockets and make a gift that is sacrificial because to not do so would haunt us for a very long time!
Yet none of these sincerely caring compassionate acts of “love” come near that which occurred on a Friday we now call “good”. None of our altruistic deeds cost us very much. Time perhaps, to speak words to the hurting that we could have spent in other productive ways. Taking a detour in life to meet another’s need is nothing more than a blip on our radar screens. And a gift from our resources often comes back to us 2, 4, 10 fold.
The love that came to be known as “Good Friday” is a love we could never emulate. It’s love that seeks the beloved unto death. The death of one who says “I’ll do it because it’s my purpose. The purpose for which I came!” It’s love for which relationship is the ultimate intended outcome.
Can you imagine a relationship so vitally important that you would permit a beloved child to suffer death? Death in such a horrific way? A death for which the beloved is innocent of wrong doing? A death that is vicariously undertaken to fulfill your will? A death that was always the end game?
I can’t! I doubt you can either. . . .
The Ultimate Outcome. . .
We know the rest of the story. We know how the divine drama ends. We celebrate that it ended on a Grace note that benefits Him who died and those of us who now call the day “Good”. The endgame ended well. The tears of Friday dissolved in Joy on the 1st day of the week.
On Good Friday, I try to imagine how it must have been that day over 2000 years ago. I think of Mary and her pain as they put her son to death. A cruel painful death. And all she could do is watch – and weep.
I think of John who stayed faithful to the Lord’s last breath. John, choking back tears as he graciously agreed to be Mary’s “son” at Jesus request.
I think of those who followed the Lord throughout his ministry. Those who thought the kingdom of which He spoke was an earthly kingdom. Their mistaken dreams dashed on Golgotha’s hillside.
And I think of the Lord as He cried out in pain and in the anguish of feeling abandoned by the Father in whose house He lived each day of His earthly life. How absolutely bereft. A pain more painful than the physical wounds that slowly took his human life. Yet He ‘lived out‘ His own words. . . “for the sake of the glory that lay ahead!”
Ultimately, the outcome is good. Very good.
Good for Jesus, the Lord of our lives who now sits at the right hand of the Father.
Good for us who are the recipients of His divine life the moment we accept Him as Lord and Savior. The moment we confess that what He did on that bleak hillside is a fact of life!
Today, Good Friday 2019, let us take a moment to reflect on love. A love no human can imagine. Yet a love that divinely graces our lives because a hot Middle Eastern afternoon turned out to be a very good day!
Linda S. Fitzgerald, M.S.Ed, CEO & Visionary Partner
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