When it was clear that the pandemic was coming to our nation, I joined millions of worried Americans in the easy trap of worry, fear, and doubt. I felt like my entire life would never be the same. I worried about the economy. I worried about my baby. I worried about my family members I am separated from by thousands of miles. I felt darkness. Where was God? Why was this happening? What did it mean?
But even in times when there isn’t a national pandemic, there are days where fears feel all-consuming. Unexpected death, hunger, abuse, money matters, and tragic losses--everyone has a secret, all-devouring struggle. All of us struggle with doubt.
I have always struggled with the “voice” in my head. The one that perpetuates fear. That sneaky, doubting, hateful, depressing voice. The voice that asks, “Why do bad things happen to good people?”
This is probably going to be the oddest Easter in over 100 years in our nation. Our church is doing virtual communion over Zoom tonight--that's a first!
Many people have lost loved ones or lost their jobs and businesses. Fear has replaced peace and joy. How do we see "Good" this Friday? How do we experience Jesus? Is this pandemic replacing the Easter message? Are peace and hope postponed?
I happened to see this message written by one of my favorite business influencers on my Instagram feed this morning. It brought so much hope to my troubled heart and I want to share it with you. (PSA: Jesus didn’t cancel the Easter message!)
“Nothing about that day seemed good. I can’t imagine how everyone felt that were there at the scene of the cross. Heartbroken and hopeless. Defeated. Lost. Confused. Scared. Everything they thought they knew seemed to be wrong. Every promise they held onto seemed to be shattered.
The first words the Enemy spoke in the garden probably came whispering in their minds...his old, familiar (and very successful) tactic to create doubt between God and his children: “...did God really say…?” Did God really say Jesus was His son? Did God really say He was the Savior of the world? Did God really say He would defeat death?
How could they believe that when their savior was dying in front of them?
Darkness fell on the world and in their hearts.
They were devastated. Hopeless. Heartbroken.
Have you been there? I have. We’ve all had Fridays in our lives where we felt like everything we knew and held onto was falling apart right in front of us. “Did God really say…?” taunts us in our private thoughts. Doubt creeps in and settles in.
We can’t see what God sees or know what he is doing. All we hear is silence and all we can see is darkness.
Good Friday is a reminder that even on those days or in those seasons, even when all hope seems lost and we feel (and even appear to be) abandoned, it’s not the end of the story.
God IS there.
He IS good.
He KNOWS everything and can do anything.
Sunday is coming.
Sunday is coming.
Sunday is coming.”
-Written by Christy Wright
Have you ever had a Friday? Not a Monday, but a Friday?
This whole pandemic has been a very long "Friday" for me. But just like that day over 2,000 years ago, Friday did end! And when we are on the otherside we will see the good God had for us.
Isn’t that incredible that we call the darkest day in history "Good Friday?" To the onlookers, it was the worst day of their life, nothing “good” about it. Little did they know their lives were just beginning and their legacy would last in Scripture until the end of time.
Their faith was small (even non-existent) but God still turned the darkest day in history into millenniums of Hope.
Our life isn’t about economics or pandemics or the unexpected tragedies. God cares about us and He cares about these issues--but all of these cares and hurts and fears are part of a bigger story, a better kingdom, a hopeful future. They will be healed and bound one day.
Because Jesus accepted the dreadful events on Good Friday, we have a place in Jesus Christ. We have a HOME to go to, and a Savior who is using all of our hurt for something amazing.
Jesus’s death was violent and brutal, and maybe you have lost someone violently and unexpectedly, too. At that moment we couldn’t see an any point to Jesus’s suffering, in fact, if we had been there we would have felt betrayed BY HIM! His journey was long and eventful, and yours will be too.
The Good News is, Sunday will come!
We can’t always see the point of personal suffering. Many American’s have unexpectedly died this month from a virus, leaving behind young families and dear friends. Many have lost their small business, which was their life’s dream. Many of us are suffering at home, locked in with an abuser or addict. If you are a person who is grieving, remember that God knows your pain--he had to watch His son die and He was forced to abandon Him. He understands your pain! He won’t leave you to carry the burdens of this world forever. He has a cure to defeat it!
Give your hurting heart to Him.
While you are at it, give Him your sins. Give Him your broken dreams. Give Him EVERYTHING!
Because he overcame it. He broke the curses Satan bound the world with. He resurrected to prove He can make YOU alive again. He defeated death so you can live again in Heaven. He endured pain to prove He can heal yours. His scars and pierced hands healed to show you that your brokenness would mend. He died sinless so you could reverse your sin. He experienced an incredible journey, and He has one for you too!
His promises are for every person. The place to start is here:
“Come unto me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
I hope you have an incredible and unforgettable moment with God this Easter. Maybe that is the point of this pandemic--He is calling you to have a moment with Him. It’s easy to get lost in our pain and we can’t even decipher the voices in our minds. But His message is still fresh, it’s still relevant, and it’s still there for those who ask Him.
Love you and Happy Easter!