The cross is the main theme every Good Friday. Hours of sermons are preached on the last hours of Jesus, His sufferings and ultimately, His cruel death. All these gory reminders bring about a sense of gloom and desolation. For some of us, Good Friday is the only time we recollect the passion of Christ. Most of the time we dwell on Bible passages that speak of God’s blessings and promises and we easily skip past Christ’s sufferings till it’s time for the next ‘Good Friday’ to remind us of the cross.
It is essential to devote much time and attention to studying Christ’s agonizing last few hours and His last words on the cross on Good Friday. However, this is a message we just cannot afford to sideline over the rest of the year. The message of the cross that is voiced out on Good Friday is one that must shape every moment of our lives.
A devout Lutheran missionary who introduced Christianity to South India, Rev. C. F Schwartz was a man of impeccable faith in Christ. The only reason for his success in spreading the Gospel was his life that constantly ‘practiced what he preached’ and yet this dear saint of God always referred to himself as an undeserving sinner saved by grace. Rev. Schwartz never forgot the work of the cross even a moment.
The cross of Christ alone accomplished salvation for us and we would surely miss the mark if we were to forget the cross. Jesus went through every form of abuse and allowed His body to be tattered and torn on that cross. The cross certainly is a place for tears. But what do we need to cry about? If we were to shed tears on a Good Friday service thinking of Jesus’ brutal execution, merely as a Historical account, we are indeed in a pitiable state. Rather if our remorse, sorrow and tears focus on our misspent lives and sin ridden heart, then the cross of Christ becomes a healing balm.
The very purpose of the cross is to remind you and me that Christ suffered in ‘your’ place and ‘mine’. The more we think of the substitution on the cross, the more we find scope for reconciliation with God. Bearing the cross on our hearts every moment is a shield against sin. Contemplating God’s grace as seen on the cross keeps us in tune with the heart of God. Is that not where we belong?
Let this Good Friday not become a day for desolation. Allow the message of the cross to echo in your heart today and always.