On This Day, This Good Friday.
I read the stories of how Jesus healed the leper and my heart just breaks at the pure sweetness of that man named Jesus. I mean think about it, really think about it. A leper lived outside of regular society and wasn't allowed to do the normal things everyone else did. They were never touched and rarely looked at. One day, Jesus sees this leper and He touches him and makes him clean, healed ... instantly! Did you catch the part where I said Jesus TOUCHED the leper? Every time I think about that story I wonder how long it had been since that poor man had felt any touch at all from another human being and for the first person in who knows how long that touched him to be JESUS CHRIST?! My heart just hurts (in a good way). I wonder if that leper man could feel the Holiness rolling in waves off of the Son of God. I wonder if he could feel the love of Jesus' heart, hear the angels in heaven singing? Did Jesus smile at the man and tell him that he was created for such as time as that? So that by being healed, he could bring glory to God?
Then I wonder where that same man, no longer a leper made to live on the outskirts of society was when Jesus was being tried and unjustly accused. Or the woman that was healed from her issue of blood? Or the mother that Jesus felt so saddened for that He brought her son back from the dead so she wouldn't be alone? Where were all those people and what were they doing on "Good" Friday when Jesus, beaten and bloodied, weak and thirsty and tired and dirty, was dragging that huge cross to Golgotha? Since their lives had been touched in such a manner by this beautiful man, did they feel His courage and sense of purpose?
On this day, this "Good" Friday, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Lamb of God, the Lion of Judah, was in so much pain! He had been whipped until His back was a raw and bloodied mess, beaten until He was unrecognizable, weak as a newborn kitten ... and still He resolutely faced Golgotha and yet more pain. His life giving and compassionate and merciful and beautiful hands were nailed to the cross. Then His feet, feet that had traveled so very many miles seeking to do good, to show mercy and teach compassion were nailed to the cross. Then the cross was lifted high into the air and He was left to just hang, in the beating sun while His accusers hovered like vultures, while the Devil paced and waited for his victory. Every. Single. Time those nails were pounded, those fists punched Him, those feet kicked Him was for YOU and for ME. Every.Single.Time He was spat upon, made fun of, hated and accused was for YOU and for ME. Every. Single. Time we choose to do the wrong thing and be angry instead of showing mercy, hang on to anger instead of forgiving, those nails were pounded in a little more.
On this day, this "Good" Friday, we were saved by this beautiful Man. We were given life and mercy and forgiveness and grace at the foot of that old rugged cross so that we wouldn't have to face what He went through. He took our punishment on Himself. A pure and blameless soul took on the ENTIRE WORLDS ugliness so that we would have a chance to gain mercy and have a relationship with our Father God. So I guess this day, this "Good" Friday really is a good day for me, a sinner. A day to help me remember that my hope is in Jesus Christ Who, on Easter Sunday, overcame the grave, fought death and won!!!
I hope that you all have a very happy and blessed Easter. I hope that in the middle of Easter egg hunts and candy eating, you can remember to look up and say "Thank You Jesus! Thank you for my HOPE! I love You to the moon and back again!"