March 30, 2013

a very Good Friday

Last night, my college and career age Sunday school group met together for our second prayer and fellowship night. We met at Baker's Square (boy, was it an adventure getting there!), each had a piece of delicious pie of all sorts and flavors, and spent a few precious hours in fellowship, reading God's Word, and finally praying for each other.

Those are the kinds of evenings that make me smile uncontrollably --- I can't stop, and I don't want to try! God fills me up with such gratitude for the Christian family He has blessed me with at my church; people so devoted to Him, I can't help but be sanctified just by spending time around them. I have never felt so at home at any other church in my entire life!

Our Pastor gave a wonderful Good Friday sermon, going through the last seven statements Jesus Christ made before his death. It was something I've never heard any other pastors teach specifically on before, and it was a refreshing thing to learn about. Our Lord was so unselfish! The first statement alone puts me to shame. The other six? *Sigh* Nothing is more humbling nor more precious than learning more about the actions and character of our Lord and Savior.

I've heard a lot of people I know joke about yesterday's celebration. "Good Friday?" they say, and go on about how terrible it all was --- excruciating pain, death... well, sure. But my Pastor explained that when Jesus breathed His last, it was a victorious moment. Don't say 'poor Jesus', because He fulfilled His purpose. That shifted at least my perspective on the subject.

And I could go on and on about the phrase 'It is finished', the most precious phrase of all to me that Jesus used throughout His life on earth, along with that which He spoke after His resurrection, "I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Both are encouraging for my faith. (What an understatement!) I don't need to fear because God is with me; I don't need to achieve anything because Jesus has already finished it all for me. Now it's just a matter of returning God's love in obedience and living according to His will --- simple, yet difficult to do because of the temptations of the world, but not impossible.

I feel so motivated to serve God fully, not as though my actions can please Him or earn anything from Him, but that my worshipful heart may give Him glory, and perhaps draw others' eyes toward Him.
Suffice to say that yesterday really was a Good Friday.

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