As Christians remember and talk about the execution of Jesus,
I think, we use the wrong preposition.
Instead of saying and believing that Jesus died for our sins,
I think we should say and believe that Jesus died because of our sins.
And, believing as I do that the Bible,
Including this story,
Is as much about now as it is about then
And as much about you and me as it is about them
How many of God’s children…
How many of God’s daughters and sons
Continue to die because of our sins?
There is nothing good about Good Friday.
There is nothing good about torture.
There is nothing good about execution.
There is nothing good about duplicity.
There is nothing good about the abuse of power which legitimizes its role by crushing another. And, another. And, another after that.
And, where was God in all of this.
God was in the scream as nails were pounded through hands and feet.
God was in the tears of the mothers who watched their children killed.
God was in the friends who refused to turn away or run away and who, instead, kept watch so that even though Jesus had to endure it alone he did not have to be alone.
God was in the last gasping breath of Jesus.
And, God was and is in that very next moment.
Today, is a day like any other day.
Errands to run.
Meals to prepare.
My list of things which need to be done.
Only it is not like any other day.
For at some deeper level
I linger between the denial and death of Friday
And the promises of Easter.
Friday does its best to keep us there;
With reminders of death disguised as headlines in the news.
While God continues to roll back the stones
And call us to towards tomorrow and to life made new.
Well not exactly.
Not with the cars and the paved roads and the village sidewalk.
But the people were the same.
And their concerns were the same.
Doing their work.
Keeping track of the children.
Worrying about dinner.
All the while, just outside the city limits, because of who he was and what he taught and how he lived and the challenged he posed to the status quo and the powers that be, Jesus was being crucified along with at least two others.
Just beyond the city limits…
While we run our errands and think about dinner and try to keep track of our children, the same thing is happening to someone else for the very same reasons.
All over again.
Christmas is easy.
Away in the Manger.
Silent Night. Holy night.
Holy Week is hard.
My head understands the events of that take place.
Confrontation in the Temple.
Crowds gathered to hear Jesus speak.
Celebrating the Passover.
But while my head understands, my heart rebels.
I tiptoe towards the edge of the story, but then turn away.
I dare not get too close to the anguish and the betrayal and absolute brutality.
And, that only gets me to Friday.
Who really understands resurrection?
(Even though they have made a TV show about it.)
How do you put words around mystery?
Or, words around an experience which takes your breath away?