Today is Good Friday

Today is Good Friday.  It is a date in our calendars that marks the darkest day in human history. 

Take a few moments to slowly read Luke 23:44-49.

44It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, 45for the sun stopped shining.  And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit My spirit.’

When He had said this, He breathed his last.

47The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” 48When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. 49But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.”

Read this passage one more time, but do so through the lens of verse forty nine.  Imagine what those onlookers must have been feeling as the events of this passage unfolded.

Those onlookers had now embarked on a journey of grieving the lose of a son, brother, friend, and Messiah.  Their minds had to have been flooded with questions.  They had to be wrestling with questions about the present and the future.  Along with being overwhelmed with question what had to have settled was sense of a lack of hope.  To describe this moment as dark is an enormous understatement.

But, that isn’t where the story ends.

Three days later some of these same onlookers will surprised by an empty tomb.  They will later discover that Jesus has been resurrected from the dead.  He is alive!

These history making events form the core of the good news of Jesus.  Jesus’ death and resurrection form the central teachings of the Gospel that provide a clear back to a reconciled relationship with God.  As we move into Easter weekend, that is what we celebrate!  Jesus is alive and He longs for us to be truly alive as well!

What does this mean for you today?

I have no doubt the next few days will be a blur of activity around your house or the church you call home.  There will be meals to prepare.  Eggs to hide.  Children’s classrooms to prepare.  Sermons to finish and preach.  Worship to lead.  Last minute details for the many events that will unfold on Sunday.

I want to encourage you take some time today and this weekend to slow down, lean in, and focus on what happened over two thousand years ago in the city of Jerusalem, and what it means for you and me.  Refuse to allow anything to get in the way of Jesus being the reason and focal point for everything that happens this weekend.

Pastors and church leaders, take a moment to read the paragraph above one more time.  Please don’t let your role and responsibilities this weekend keep you from experiencing and celebrating resurrection power.

It’s Friday, but Sunday is coming!

Post contributed by Tom Planck, HGC Healthy Church Catalyst.