It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.
The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.
From Luke 23:44–49 NIV
Good Friday is a day when I feel the weight of the sacrifice Jesus made for me. Normally, I can go about my day having some awareness that I’m broken and sinful, but my soul isn’t very disturbed. Do you know what I mean? However, in this season when I slow down to reflect on the details of Jesus’ death, I come face-to-face with the consequences of my sin.
Darkness. Suffering. Death.
With each detail, I’m drawn into the emotion of the day. In verse 49 above it says, “…those who knew him (Jesus), including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.”Those who knew and loved Jesus watched him die. There was tremendous hurt and grief . . .
Caused by my sin.
My human mind can’t reconcile the unfairness of an innocent man taking on the penalty for the guilty. I want to apologize and take back the things I’ve done to wrong God—as if a mere “I’m sorry” would ever be enough. I can’t make things right. I can never repay the debt I owe God. There is nothing I can do.
Regret. Shame. Helplessness.
As I focus my eyes on what happened on the cross this day, I realize once again the depth of God’s love for me. I always know he loves me, but remembering the details of this day forces me to look at the depth of that love and the great cost attached to that love. Jesus’ death means life for me, and he endured it because of his love for me. How do you wrap your mind around that type of love?
Gratitude. Hope. Love.
So, today, I slow down. I reflect. I remember the sacrifice Jesus made on my behalf. It weighs on my heart and there is a tremendous sadness. I sit here and let it stir in my soul. And as I do, it causes me to fall even more in love with Jesus.