First: a link to a piece on The Well Blog (a blog produced by InterVarsity specifically for women) titled “My Sacrilege, Our Sacrilege” by Ashley Van Dragt. Here’s an excerpt to tempt you to click the link and read the whole thing–which, if you want to know the “moment” she refers to in the first sentence, you will have to do.
Over the course of Lent, I’ve kept coming back to that moment. I keep going back to it because I came to realize that there are words for it.
And these are the words that get at the significance of Lent, of Good Friday. It’s the time of year when we remember Jesus on the cross. And at the end of it, on one horrible night we carry ourselves and our preoccupations and our snotty-nosed children to church to mentally put Jesus on the cross and into the grave. And we say together the most hellish sounding words:
And it’s profane and terrible…and important.
Because — my God, my God — we have indeed done something wrong.
Here’s the link again–so you don’t even have to scroll up!
Second: Today I went to our church’s Stations of the Cross service. I wrote a post about what emerged for me from this service last year. This year two things were fresh and new:
1. Jesus’ heart for US–WHILE while enduring SO much pain and suffering. “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do,” he said, and then he interacted with the thief on the cross. “I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” Oh, the heart of God revealed in these moments! Forgiveness beyond what we can imagine!
2. This prayer–so simple, yet coupled with the heart of God, so powerful: O blessed Lord Jesus, be gracious to us and all who have gone astray from your ways, and bring us home again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith; who now live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Third, this is a link to “Good Friday Blues,” a piece published at Christianity Today. It’s about Texas gospel bluesman Blind Willie Johnson’s recording of “Dark Was the Night—Cold Was the Ground” with Columbia Records in 1927. Though the song has no lyrics, it is about Good Friday, with the title borrowed from an 18th century English hymn by Thomas Haweis:
Dark was the night, cold was the ground
on which the Lord was laid;
His sweat, like drops of blood, ran down;
In agony he prayed.
The article about Blind Willie Johnson tells part of his story and contains a link to a recording of this song. Both are wonderful.