How’s it going for you this Friday the 13th? Chances are pretty good that something is bothering you. A co-worker is obnoxious. All the news is conflict. Taxes due next week. Maybe some person or group has turned their gossip against you. Are you weary?
Where’s Easter when you need it?
Good Friday we observed life as it is. The woes we experience, our sins against one another and God, get their just punishment when Jesus dies. A few days later we’re told it’s going to be ok, but Friday the 13th things may seem unlucky for you. You have two options. Let Easter be over, the lilies faded, and you slog on as if God is dead. Or you embrace the paradox with hope, the paradox of being crucified with Christ and raised again today to newness of life, confident and courageous in God.
The penitential psalms are as appropriate in the season of Easter as they are in Lent. From the fifth penitential psalm, Psalm 102. “Hear my prayer, Lord; let my cry for help come to you. Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress.” That’s Good Friday; that’s us dying with Jesus. Maybe that’s you today, Friday the 13th.
But Easter is about more than our feelings. Easter is every day about our good God. The Lord “will respond to the prayer of the destitute; he will not despise their plea. Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the Lord: The Lord looked down from his sanctuary on high, from heaven he viewed the earth, to hear the groans of the prisoners and release those condemned to death. So the name of the Lord will be declared in Zion and his praise in Jerusalem when the peoples and the kingdoms assemble to worship the Lord.”
“Stop doubting and believe!” (John 20:27).