By James P. Riggs
Have you noticed the light is returning? It is subtle, but we are just at the cusp of longer days. Hope is in the air; even though we can’t see it yet, we know that spring will come. While Easter Day is on the horizon, here we are at Good Friday. A day when a man named Jesus went to the cross for our sins so that we may have eternal life.
Likely at some point in your life you have had your share of Good Friday moments. Those dark valleys of life that challenge us–the loss of a job, the grief of losing a loved one, difficult decisions about the future, health concerns, bullying by others, confronting a challenging issue, and the list goes on. As we walk through these valleys we do come out the other side usually stronger, a clearer sense of direction, and a reminder that God does not leave us alone. Sam Lloyd writes, “these forty days of Lent are the Church’s gift to us, a retreat for the soul to face the dark places within us and around us and to grow more alive, more open to truth and to God’s love.”
Yes, the light is returning, spring is coming, and Easter will arrive soon, but today is a day to sit at the foot of the cross with Jesus pondering his sacrifice for us and our own Good Friday moments.
“You have suffered great affliction and have borne it patiently, Even death by crucifixion, fully to atone for me; For you chose to be tormented that my doom should be prevented. Thousand, thousand thanks are due, dearest Jesus, unto you.”
(Ernst C. Homburg; translated Catherine Winkworth)