Today is Good Friday. It is the saddest day of the year for Catholics. For today is the day that Jesus died upon the cross. It is a somber and sobering day for the whole world.
I’ve always accepted that, but I’ve never thought about why it is so sobering. That is, until I heard Father Barnes give his homily at the Good Friday Service today. The thesis of the homily was “He did it for me.” When I sat back and thought about that, I was stunned.
Jesus, who is God, the most powerful, perfect, and loving being in the world humbled himself to give His life in the most painful and humiliating way invented, crucifixion. He was beaten, spat on, stripped, humiliated, left by his closest friends, denied by His closest earthly friend, and unfairly executed. He was put through the greatest show trial in human history because the Pharisees did not like Him and feared that they would lose their power on earth. They had him scourged and beaten with in inches of His life. They forced him to carry a massive, heavy, thick wood cross. They stripped Him of his humanity, drove nails through His hands and feet. All this with his mother weeping and watching as her son was suffering so much. And He finally died on the cross, abandoned, bleeding, cold, and alone. And why did He go through all of that pain and agony?
He did it for me. He suffered so much because he loves me so much. He went through Hell for me. He cares so much for me and all people that he did all that for us. When I got to thinking about that, I couldn’t help but sit in awe and amazement that God actually did all of that for me. I couldn’t help but drop to my knees in prayer and give thanks to God for all that He’s done for me.
He did it for me.