Friday, April 18, 2014

Jesus' Not-So-Good Friday

"When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar,
He said, It is finished:
and He bowed his head, and gave up the ghost."
John 19:30

Today was a dreary day where we live.
It was like the sky was pouring tears...
cold, cutting tears...
falling down upon and around us here.
Zachary and I had to be out and about taking care of some things,
and it was a chore going in and out of all of the places we visited.
Driving was very difficult and visibility was poor.
Traffic was heavy and wild on the interstate.
Can I tell you how much I do not like the interstate?
I prefer country back the path less traveled.
Unfortunately, sometimes, we just have no choice.
The incessant rain, coupled with the health issues going on in our household,
made today quite miserable and hard to get through.

Several times throughout the day, things went wrong.
It seemed to be one thing right after another...
in a long, succession...never-ending.
I lost count of the times today that Zach turned to look at me and say, 
"Mama, this has been such a bad day.
This just isn't our day, is it?".
To be honest, I agreed with him...every, single time.

Don't get me wrong.
We have MUCH to be thankful for.
I feel so guilty for complaining or for feeling irritated by all of the things that seemed to go in reverse.
Because, truly, in reality, we are extremely blessed...
in spite of pain and sickness and suffering and nothing seeming to go the way we wanted it to.

I forgot about what day this really is until late this evening, 
as I reflected upon the day after returning home.

Here I am...complaining about my day...the uncooperative weather and the other miseries in it...
when it finally hits me that my day was a blissful reprieve compared to His...
that Friday almost 2000 years ago.

Good Friday.

I always wondered why it is called "GOOD" Friday.
What exactly was "good" about it...for the One I adore more than words,
my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ?
Could classified as "Good" about that beyond-horrible day?
I mean, really.
What was accomplished on that day turned out to be good...
actually, it was the best thing that ever happened...for us, that is.
What about Him?
"Good Friday" was not good...for Him.

Every time I read the account of this day in the life of Jesus,
I am brought to tears.
I cannot read it...I cannot think upon it...I cannot remember it...
without crying...
as the sky seemed to be doing all day long today.

Good Friday...what a name to call Crucifixion Day.
Could it have been any more opposite of "good"?
For Him?

I think of the weight that hung over Him as He prayed in Gethsemane.
How He longed, with all His soul, for someone to stand by Him.
How He asked, repeatedly, for His disciples to please give up their sleep...
just so they could lend moral support to Him in His darkest hour.
How He begged His Father to make another way.
How He longed with all His soul to be relieved and excused from the horrific lot that had fallen to Him.
How His body quivered each time it felt the massive blow 
from the bone-infused whip of the merciless Roman solider.
How the blood spewed and spilled from every pore of His tortured body.
How the pain pierced clear through to the sole of His feet, 
as the crown made from sharp thorns was brutally thrust
into the top of His head, down into the very bones that made up His skull.
How they laid that old, rugged, splintery, heavy cross upon His still-bleeding, raw, flesh-torn back,
and forced Him to carry it through the open street.
How He staggered and flinched under its weight until they finally commanded 
a man named Simon to share His load.
How He walked up that lonely hill called Golgotha, knowing His main trial was yet to come.
How He willingly laid His body down upon that same old, rugged cross and allowed a strong hand...
that He had created....
to drive long, freshly-sharpened nails through His hands and His feet.
How the pain was nearly more than He could bear, as that some old, rugged cross was raised...
with Him on it...and lowered into a hole in the ground.
How He hung there for six, agonizing, anguished hours,
until the plan of my salvation was 100% completely finished.

The miseries of my day today, regardless of how miserable they were,
are not worthy to be compared to the miseries of my Lord on that infamous Friday.

Our worst day will never hold a candle to the likes of His worst day...ironically known as "Good Friday".

Take a few moments to watch Ernie Haase and Signature Sound sing,
"Oh, What A Savior" written by Marvin P. Dalton.

Thank You, Jesus.
For dying for me.
For living through what our world has named "Good Friday"
and going the distance to purchase my redemption.
Thank You for delivering me from sin.
Thank You for loving me that much...
my dear, sweet, wonderful Lord.
I will never be able to thank you enough.

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