Brothers and sisters,Today is Good Friday; a day that is one of the most somber days of the liturgical year. I wonder every year about what it was like for Jesus and those who loved him to walk to the cross. I have also wondered whatever possessed our Church Fathers to call this day “Good”.
Have you ever wondered this as well? Once I was asked this question by an atheist. They told me it was such a “turnoff that people actually celebrate a day of brutal torture”. I get that. I can see that from the outside looking in, it must be incomprehensible.
So, what makes it Good? Luke 9:51-56 gives us a clue. ” He resolutely set his face toward Jerusalem…”.Jesus didn’t run away, he walked toward the cross. He didn’t shirk from the path before him. He walked it out of obedience and love for His Father and for all of humanity. It was good and right for him to do so.
Today, Good Friday puts the cross before us. Can you resolutely journey with Jesus today? Follow his footsteps? Ask for him to be present with you? Will you ask for the courage and strength to look at the pain and suffering in our world and see Jesus’s face?
For the past two years, we have pondered Jesus’ journey together by interacting with the stations of the cross display in our church building. Not so this year. I have a strong sense it may be hard for many of us to be by ourselves in the next few days.
While I urge you to acknowledge your feelings, I also pray they will not prevent you from focusing on Jesus and the good of Good Friday. We are not physically together this year, BUT we can be together in spirit.
Please download the stations of the cross booklet we would have used at church. I challenge each of you to set aside a quiet hour to pray with it.
May this be a good Friday for you all.