If it’s Good Friday, why do I feel bad today?
Any day in which something BAD happens, like today in history, when Jesus Christ was crucified, doesn’t feel “GOOD.” The pain is apparent. The future is unsure.
But today is called “Good” Friday and the question of this day is always “why???”
Historians don’t have a full answer as to why this day has become known as “Good Friday” but many have their theories. Some think the term “good” came to be because Christ won our salvation on this day in history. Some say it is “good” because long ago it was known as “God’s Friday” and, over time, someone failed the spelling bee.
But the “Good” of this Friday is really apparent to anyone who has embraced “the rest of the story” – that the tomb was empty 3 days later and that all sinners were saved for eternity, as Christianity teaches. That peace of salvation surpasses all understanding, and it’s GOOD.
But history and Christian worldview aside, the truth is much the same for you and I still today. We have all lived the “Good Friday” story to some extent in our own lives and some of us have lived it many times.
When you were not accepted at your dream school; when you missed the cut on the basketball team or when your boyfriend or girlfriend broke up with you, you saw that day as very far from “good” and somewhere much closer to “the worst day of your life.” That “worst day” can range from experiencing a minor setback that seems big at the time to a major “knockback” that shocks you, like an Alzheimer’s or cancer diagnosis or death.
But 3 days later, 3 months later or maybe several life stages later, you reflect on the “good” in it and sometimes it can border on “the very good.” The next steps you chose to take, after the “setback/calamity/incident” forced you into a new direction – a direction which formed you into the person you are today, battle scars included. And battle scars often cherished.
Ten years ago, Alzheimer’s sent me reeling as I watched my mother change from an outgoing and active lady to cautious and anxious. I was questioning the existence of a God who could allow such a humiliating disease to exist. Yet today, my perspective has been rewritten. For 10 years, my mother loved every individual she met. She never failed to comment on their “cute shirt” and she said very often to anyone helping her, “You are a nice person.” She could reference nothing but what was in her field of vision at the moment because of her brain’s deterioration, but her unwavering, unashamed kindness amazed everyone she encountered. And I witnessed how to live lovingly and non-judgmentally in the moment, something I may have been short on in my impatient younger days. Therefore, I can honestly say that, today, I cherish the lessons Alzheimer’s taught me.
And TRANSITIONS IN LIFE can knock you down, just like incidents. The confidence that grows from those lonely days of homesickness on a new college campus bring maturity. The passion you now feel for your new sport after being cut from the team fulfill you, and you know, deep down, how unlikely you EVER would have been to try something new had you not been forced. The job layoff you experienced inspired you to finally get that degree you had always aspired for…and the list goes on and on and on…..
Battle-hardened confidence as a result of taking “bad,” calling it “good” and labeling it an “opportunity” rather than a “loss” breeds perspective like nothing else. There are perspectives about yourself that you never knew existed that make you proud. Your resilience amazes even yourself.
Kansas City experienced an act of hate last Sunday that stunned the community and beyond when 3 innocent people were gunned down by a man out to terrorize because of his beliefs. The unbelievable witness of one woman’s story in the aftermath has left the city and country amazed, awed and reevaluating perspective. The mother, who lost both her son and her father in one moment of terror, has spoken often in recent days of the peace she holds in her heart as she pledges not to let his man steal her from “living life.” She spoke publicly of this feeling within hours of the incident.
It’s amazing, inspiring and uplifting to see her, hear her and experience awe of her perspective. Her day wasn’t good last Sunday. Far from it. But her witness to the world that love conquers evil makes an impact that I, and many, many others, think is VERY GOOD!!!