Growing up I hated the Good Friday service. It is not that I minded going to the service all that much, but I hated the part when we had to read the passion and assume the part of the crowd shouting for Jesus' execution (really murder). There was a part of me that knew I was the one to blame (I had enough sin in my life to know that if I was the only one here he would have to die in my place) and I hated the fact that I killed my friend. There is no doubt that the solemnity of the Good Friday service produced a longing in my heart for the unmitigated triumph of the Easter mass. The celebration filled me to the depths of my being and, after having finally been rescued from my sin in college, the Easter celebration grew even more meaningful filling not only my heart but my soul.
So what of it now? Now that I have been saved these many years I never grow tired of the presentation of the Gospel:
- that I am a sinner that deserved to die and be separated from God forever in Hell
- that God loved me so much that he sent his Son to take my sin upon himself and die in my place so that I could be friends with God
- that believing that Christ did that for me and that he was the only one who could do this would allow me entrance into heaven and into an abundant life here and now
What a story! What a God! And in my heart of hearts, from the depths of my soul, I have taken the gift of this life offered to me by God and want to love him forever. This has relieved me of the burden of my sins and allowed me to become the prisoner of Hope. It has given me the assurance that if I were to die tonight I would join my savior, Jesus Christ, in Heaven and worship him forever.
Yes, this Easter is a reminder of this God that I have tasted and seen and convicts me of the sin that still too easily entangles me. Thanks be to God for this gift that I could never deserve but that he so desparately wanted to give to me.