Thursday, April 09, 2009

'Good' Friday

Good Friday. It isn't called that everywhere. Those in Germany call it Karfreitag, meaning Mourning Friday. Not surprising. God's hand was raised against the darkness of sin that day long ago when Jesus was led to the cross.

It was a grievious day of loss for those who loved their friend and servant-master and did not yet understand this act of love as Immanuel--God in the flesh giving his life for us.

But that's also when it becomes “good” Friday as we realize that torturuous death was love's redemption. We who were created in God's image, created to be in relationship with him, could know the restoration of deep connection and intimacy with him.

I wrote about that day in Scars that Wound, Scars That Heal--A Journey Out of Self-Injury:

Jesus had come to earth to put on human skin to live, breathe, feel, and hurt like you and I do. He had crazy expectations thrown at him. He was spat on, misrepresented, and betrayed—sometimes by those he was closest to.

He then endured humiliation and whippings, a crown of thorns pressed onto his head, a heavy cross placed on his shoulders, and nails hammered into his wrists and feet. So many wounds you couldn’t count them. But each welt, gash, and bruise on Jesus’ body shouts ‘I love you’ and, if accepted, is a gift of freedom and healing.

Only Jesus, as God come to earth, had the power to bear scars that have the ability to reach deep into the hearts of people and heal the hidden pain they feel inside. That’s why another cut or another burn or another punch to the wall isn’t enough. ‘Another’ is never enough. But the wounds Jesus bore are. As he took his last breath on the cross, he said, ‘It is finished' (John 19:30). Wrapped up in those words is the power of his wounds—Jesus' completion of God’s plan to set right each person’s messed-up relationship with him and to make it possible for them to experience the depth of his love.

Scars That Wound, Scars That Heal--A Journey Out of Self-Injury, p. 117

Though you may not self-injure, you may be well acquainted with your own hidden pain. Over the next days, it will be my prayer that you will experience the 'good' of this weekend of celebration, the power of Jesus’ wounds, the depth of his love.

author of the Live Free series, Standard Publishing

true stories, true hope

for teens, young adults,
and those who care about them.

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