I know it’s now been over a week since Easter, but yesterday at church I was pondering again and thought I’d share the thoughts. The last few years, Good Friday has followed a predictable pattern for me. This year I once again started the day with the intention of making it properly deep and mournful, but quickly the whole day felt out of control. I was preparing the festivities for Sunday, but we had a Good Friday service to get to in the evening, and this year three of us were in the choir and needed to arrive early for practice. I was also scheduled to play guitar and sing along with my viola playing friend, and while we’d practiced a lot on Tuesday and my voice had returned from its laryngitis hiatus, I was feeling pretty nervous and edgy. And over time the edginess made its way out in impatience with the kids and general dissatisfaction with everything and snapping at everyone. The day of “proper mournfulness” turned into Mama being mean to everyone. All this to say that by the time we got to the Good Friday service, my happy-go-luckiness of the day before had turned into genuine renewed awareness of the garbage of my sin and my need for Good Friday. I think in His kindness God does this for me. Without even noticing, I am prone to creeping complacency and nonchalance. I begin to think lightly of what Jesus did for me and why He did it. Then God shows me flashes of my own sin, in stupid things like impatience with children and biting my husband’s head off and worrying obsessively about how I will appear in front of people. It’s so stupid; it’s not even interesting sin. But I am gently reminded: Yes, I do need Good Friday. I do desperately need a Savior to get me out of this mess that is myself. A beautiful old hymn was sung as a duet at the service with these powerful words:
You who think of sin but lightly Nor suppose the evil great, Here may view its nature rightly Here its guilt may estimate.
Thankfully, mercifully, God gives us Good Friday, and He also gives us Easter. And maybe the crappy feeling of Good Friday is His way of giving all the more joy on Easter morning.