Good morning all! Just a few days until Easter but first….
Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, here is your son.’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Here is your mother.’ And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home. After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfil the scripture), ‘I am thirsty.’ A jar full of sour wine was standing there. So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the wine, he said, ‘It is finished.’ Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
I am not really sure what I would like to say today. Good Friday really isn’t “good” in the way we normally mean it. Good Friday is all over facebook this morning. Let me just show you some of the images people are using to show their passion…maybe that will help us…
Almost all of the imagery has to do with cross but more than that, the grief of the death that is to come. I didn’t really grow up with a concept of Good Friday. I remember going to a service maybe once or twice in my growing up years and it almost makes it more powerful for me in these adult years. Every church that I have served has celebrated Good Friday in some way and I find that that moment to grieve is very powerful. Today brings forth all of those moments of death that we don’t deal with in the story every day and opens us up to be allowed to just dwell and reflect and grieve deeply. I am glad for that. Following the Passion story (Latin: suffering) into new life is something that I am grateful I get to do every year even though it can be painful. And through this we somehow turn back to God because we know that today does not win. We come out of the Passion with Compassion (with the suffering).
Jesus cries out, “I thirst” before it is finished. This sticks in my mind way beyond today. There are others who thirst. Mother Teresa had a sign up that said, “I thirst” to help her continue on in her work. Maybe that his why today is good…to remind us to keep going out of our grieve and into changing the world to work towards a world where that kind of death does not win.
Go and be today. Dwell a little bit to prepare to come out of it into new life.