Walking around our yard with my eleven-year-old and our faithful sidekick, an easily seventy-pound black lab we affectionately (well, on most days) call Ziggy, taking in the beauty of this gentle warm day, I am drawn back to the remembrance that this is Good Friday. The birds are singing, the moss covered limbs of our grand oaks sway effortlessly in the breeze. Everything is in order. Perfectly suited to this day, even the overcast sky gives her hint at all this day stands for.
I have watched as the hours ticked slowly away on the clock. By the passing of this hour, they would have taken my Savior from the cross now and begun preparing His body for burial. The Bible and history record this day as the darkest day in all of time. Yet, for those of us who have been reborn through the gift of this day, we know that it is always darkest before dawn. We know that great things are taking place in the bleakest moments because we know God is faithful. Faithful to finish what He started many years ago in the Garden of Eden.
It was there at the beginning of time His love for mankind was established. On the cross of Calvary, it was forever displayed in the sacrifice of Heaven’s Spotless Lamb.
“For God so loved…”
He loved with purpose. With a purpose of belonging to us, for the purpose of suiting our needs. He loved us so much He gave His Son in place of us. In order to save us from ourselves. In spite of who we are or what we have done or ever will do. In order that you and I could become the sons and daughters of God through the blood of Jesus.
His love for us is more than mere words of affection, it is alive and it is demonstrative, coming to us, teaching us, leading and guiding us homeward. His death is the perfect picture of how far He was willing to go for you, for me. His burial signified how deep that loved flowed, deeper than any time or distance. Much deeper than any sin. His resurrection forever sealing our future hope of eternal life, with Him. Our Father, the One who will forever wipe away all tears from our eyes.
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes;
and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow,
nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain:
for the former things are passed away.
What seemed like the darkest and ugliest day of all time, in fact, was the dawning of new life. The cross was a shadow on the horizon of the days to come. As the sunset and night spread her wings of doubt and deception, grace blossomed. Hope sprouted with the sprinkling of each drop of blood that fell to the cold hard ground. Abundant Life became a reality through the death and burial of God’s Son.
So in your troubled days, when all hope seems lost. When all is gloom and despair and the sun refuses to shine on you. Remember in His time, in His way, God is at work making all things beautiful. He will not leave you there in your darkness. Any second now the rays of His love will appear on the horizon ushering in a new day. A new Son-Rise.
For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-18
Praying you have a Blessed and Happy Easter!