Today is Good Friday. But that is a really bad name, for a very terrible day. “Good Friday” is only a day that is only good in hindsight, and even then it’s obscured through darkness, pain and difficulty.
Today is the day that Jesus entered fully into our darkness to provide a way out. Today is the day the light of the world was snuffed out. Today is the day that darkness seemed to win. Today is the day that the Messiah died.
It’s today that when we look upon Jesus and his sacrifice we realize how unable we are to make our lives work as we would want. We see our struggle for coherence, meaning, and power. We see in Jesus’ naked body nailed to the cross our own betrayals of friends and family. We see how our desire to create empires of meaning and worth are empty, and filled with dust and dirt. We ask ourselves “what have we become”?
Bruce Springsteen once sang,
Fear’s a powerful thing, baby
It can turn your heart black you can trust
It’ll take your God filled soul
And fill it with devils and dust
And on this day so many years ago – the disciples hearts were filled with devils and dust. Their God-filled soul, seemed empty, as they watched the Son of God die on a piece of wood. The point is that today is not a “good” day.
For three days doubt, darkness and death reign.
So today is not an easy day. Today is not a good day. Today is though a necessary day.
Today, like on a day many years ago Jesus’ body was broken, like bread, so that we might be made whole. Jesus poured his life out, like wine, as a sacrifice for our sins. Jesus gave up his life so that we might find it.
This is the message of today: life, breath, blood and brokenness all mix together so that in the end death might be beaten. But on this day we remember that before death was beaten, it seemed as if it had won. Before darkness lost its final battle, the light of the world was lost. So today we remember that before light and love burst forth…they went through death and darkness…