He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief, surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
– Isaiah 53:3-6
On Good Friday we commemorate Jesus’s death by crucifixion. We meditate on the truth of God’s unbound love, which kept Jesus nailed to the cross for the forgiveness of sin. We walk through the story of the last hours of Jesus’s life on earth, and open ourselves to his sorrow, his suffering, and the cold, dead silence of his grave.
This year, how do you come to Good Friday? Are you welcoming this remembrance, because it resonates with how you’re experiencing the world right now? Some may be ambivalent—”I know I should be somber, but never quite know how to approach this day.” Maybe you are hesitant—walking into darkness feels risky. Life is already way too heavy.
At the cross, we touch on our greatest need for God, our need for his very presence in the void, our only real hope to endure the darkness we know is real. On Friday let’s encourage one another to enter the scene, however it is appropriate, believing he is indeed with us; let’s dare to meet Jesus’ eyes, and in his grief, somehow, rediscover him. His presence is light, and life.
It is good to enter in together. Here are some ways that we can set this day apart for the sake of drawing nearer to God:
- Walk the Stations of the Cross
Sign up to walk the stations at The Commons
- Practice silence, self-examination, and simplicity
Use this resource from Tampa Underground.
… from food or from something else to spend time seeking God in prayer and silence. Plan how and when you’ll end your fast. Check out these fasting resources from Father Aaron Damiani
- Wear something black
- Draw the Passion story in chalk on your sidewalk
- Hand-make a cross
… from sticks, branches, cardboard, or wood, and place it where you can pray throughout the day. Share a photo of your creation. On Good Friday evening, cover the cross with a cloth…anticipate uncovering and adorning it in ribbons or flowers on Easter!
- Read Scripture
Read a gospel account of the Passion. Choose a verse that stands out to you, and write it down. Say this verse out loud to God throughout the day. Share it with someone else.