Remember the “Good” of this Friday

I woke up this morning to an abnormally chilly day in Charleston (I don’t think it ever reached more than upper 50’s, and it’s April!), and I could not help but think. . . I have a lot of homework to do in the next couple of days.  I did realize that today is the last day of Lent; after forty days of preparation, today Christians somberly recognize the death of our savior almost two thousand years ago, bearing the weight of our sins.  However, as a college student enjoying a long weekend (one of the nice things about a Christian college is not having classes on Good Friday), do we appreciate this day?  Even though many of us go home this weekend to spend the holiday with our families, it is not a particularly long break, and there are still papers to be written, projects to be finished, pages to be read, events to plan for, and many aspects of daily life to complete.

Since normal life goes on, how should we observe and properly honor this important day?  This can be a tough question.  I admit that though I observed the Catholic ritual of no meat/partial-fasting, this is the most that I really thought about the significance of the day until late this afternoon.  Instead, I finished my French homework, did some of my reading, responded to a couple of e-mails, chatted with my sister, complained about having to wear long sleeves in April, and read a couple of news articles.  In short, like most Christians today, I had not taken the time to read the Bible, have a quiet moment of reflection and prayer, or – Heaven forbid! – even gone to church.

Jesus after the passion - taken in a Cathedral that I visited in Barcelona, Spain.

Doing mundane tasks today does not make a bad Christian, but it seems to me that a failure to recognize Good Friday is a failure to appreciate Christ.  To someone who does not understand Christianity, it could seem morbid to term a day “Good” that marks the terrible death of one man for the sake of all sinners – all men.  However, we know that Jesus was the ultimate “Good” because he was the son of God – the source of all goodness – and that his death was the best “Good” that God could possibly have given us, in placing the burden of our sins on Jesus.

So, it is important to take just a moment to think about this greatest of blessings that God gave us before continuing with the rest of the day, inane activities and all.  After praying, or reading the Bible, or however you like to spend time with God, try to take the peace with you through everything else you have to do – I can tell you that it makes all the homework, housework, or whatever you have to do a lot more bearable.

Blessings to everyone this Good Friday!