Today we remember the day the world went dark.
Jesus, beaten and ridiculed, voluntarily went up on the cross to take our place.
Before heading to our church service this afternoon, I was struck with the realization that my hands are blood red. I’ve always known that our sin is the reason God sent his son to die on our behalf, but today I was bowled over with the understanding that it’s not simply just my sin. Not only is my sin etched into the cross, I took part in the beating, in the torment and slaughter of my messiah.
I went into church already heavy in spirit.
I stood silently through the first worship song, which is unlike me, but it felt wrong to sing. Instead I fought to keep in my emotions. A singular tear silently escaped during the verses, but I held myself together. My pastor began speaking about the people involved in Jesus’s death, the executioners, leaders, and witnesses to the event. He talked about the responsibility of those there and the responsibility of us now. When he said we all nailed him to the cross that day, it took everything in me to not stand up and shout, “It was me! It’s my fault!”
Overdramatic much? Normally I would say yes, but today was like no other Good Friday for me. This year it feels different. It’s as if I’m in the crowd trying to hold in my emotions, letting one single tear escape as I watch my King suffer because of my own failing.
So I sat there in the back of the church and completely broke open. As I prayed and wept, I saw Jesus kneeling at my feet and in my heart I cried out, “Why?! What did I do to deserve you serving me? After all I’ve done. I am not deserving. I am not worthy. I’m sorry.” Over and over…. “I’m so sorry.”
As I tried to pull myself together, (which only made me sob harder), God placed his people around me to hold me as I fell apart and another to pass an invaluable tissue to this mess God created. I’ve never been so thankful for a Kleenex as I was then. I was a straight up mess.
I managed to pull myself together and as I closed the door to my car, I erupted all over again. These last two days have been hard for me, the last few years have been incredibly difficult, and if I’m honest, my life as a whole has been one hard thing after the next. My life has been grueling from every angle, and I’ve built up an impenetrable crust on my exterior as a result. The difference now is Jesus.
These last two years walking with him have turned me into butter and today I melted. I used to see softness as weakness. The truth is, I am weak. I am weak and broken and never enough. The glory is that in my weakness He gives me strength. In my brokenness, He makes me whole. He is enough and I need nothing else. There is immense power in knowing God loves me despite my awfulness. I can never be deserving of his love, mercy and grace, yet He sent his son to take my place.
I’ve known devastating darkness, and today is filled with an immanent gloom. Tomorrow I’m going to step back from the blog to just ruminate on the tomb where Jesus lay. On Sunday morning, we’ll rejoice in the redemption given to us when we least deserved it. I invite you to pause and do the same.
2 Corinthians 12: 9-10
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.