Even to this day I am struck with the incongruity of "Good" Friday.
This is especially true for me since I have many personal memories of good things happening on Good Friday: school holidays (back in the day), birthday parties (being a late March birthday boy), and the birth of my daughter, Katherine, on Good Friday.
But in the religious sense of the term, what could possibly be good about Good Friday?
Photo by Alicia Quan on Unsplash
The term comes from an antiquated meaning of "good." At one time "good" was used as a synonym for "holy." For instance, the "Holy Bible" is sometimes called the "Good Book." So, Good Friday is simply "Holy" Friday.
It is the day that the church focuses on the death of Christ, a particularly brutal, unjust, and heartbreaking event. Through the lens of Good Friday we focus on the humanity, especially the suffering, of Jesus.
Jesus' death is "Holy" because it was a sacrifice for us, his children. Through the sacrifice of Jesus our lives are made Holy - death has lost its sting, sin is not the last word or human life!
But, as an act of faith, we should also let Good Friday help us focus on our own humanity; our own actions and intentions that cause suffering, and injustice, and broken hearts. For we need Easter to heal us, to free us from death, to help us know of the forgiving love of God made known to us in the sacrifice of God's Son.
On Good Friday we must seek for the Holy in the midst of our lives --even, and especially during times of crisis! We must get out of our own ways to be able to follow The Way.
So, on this Good Friday, where is the Holy? How can we shed our sins that we might be clothed in the light of love?
Photo by Dylan McLeod on Unsplash
Who Do You Seek Find?
We come to this time in search of Him
But on this day we find ourselves
Someone who has
betrayed another, a friend, someone we loved
lashed out in anger or impotence
denied someone or something, not just once, to serve ourselves
twisted the law to our own benefit
hidden behind the law to escape our conscience
joined a mindless mob to feel power
jettisoned the truth for expediency
watched in silence an act of evil
acted in secret because of fear
It is here, in this crushing story that we find us... me
[a poem for Good Friday based on the Revised Common Lectionary - Year A]