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Good, Good Friday

This year, Good Friday finds me smack-dab in the middle of a struggle with sin, although it is not the kind of sin that some people would give a second thought.  I’m not in danger of being arrested or damaging any relationships, just in case you are wondering (I would be).  Still, the Bible tells me that sin is sin (James 2:10) for what it does to our relationship with Him, not for the effect it has on others, contrary to popular belief. And so here I sit, the knowledge of my sin a heavy brick in my chest.

I know that my sin is not unusual and that others have struggled with the same thoughts and attitudes (1 Corinthians 10 :13), but this is my struggle. Knowing that I am not alone in it hasn’t helped so far.  In fact, no effort that I have made in and of myself to get past it has done any good.  And so I find myself on Good Friday, keenly aware of my very real need for a Savior.  Until now, when I have thought about what happened to Jesus on that day, I have been tempted to side with Peter and protest the necessity of Jesus’ brutal death.

Today, however, I find myself watching the events in my imagination as a guilty and silent onlooker.  I cannot stop Him.  I will not try.  I need His sacrifice too much.  The notion both shames me and stirs me to worship as I haven’t before, further evidence (as if I needed it), that God can use the things that the enemy intends for evil, both Jesus’ crucifixion and my own struggle with the flesh, for my good and His glory.  What an amazing God we serve!

I urge you, friends, to take a moment today to stare your own sin square in the face.  Let the realization that this is what you produce on your own without Christ sink in.  Once it has, turn your gaze to the cross and remember the moment of your deepest guilt.  Feel the pain and transfer it in your mind to the person of Jesus, realizing that He felt that very pain multiplied by every soul that ever lived or will live even as he died.  

Now understand that, in spite of the fact that the very sin you currently struggle with hung Him there, His love for you was and is even more intense than the pain He felt, His desire to glorify His Father even more consuming than His desire to be spared agony.  Stand at the foot of this cross and see if you are not compelled to love and worship Jesus anew this Easter, giving Him the glory for any good that exists in your life.

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