- Keep faith in the midst of our doubts
- Why is it called Good Friday
- It’s Jesus’s death that saved us
- Trusting Jesus, as his blood was shed for me
- We live in freedom because of Christ
The following is a full transcript of a Facebook Live, where Susie is speaking extemporaneously – she is unscripted and unedited.
Hi friends, it is Friday. It in fact is good Friday. And I want to talk with you today for a few minutes about having faith in the midst of our doubts, trusting God in the midst of our doubts. So let’s talk about this because it will help us build a better relationship with God. It will also help us build a better relationship with ourselves. If you pop in and I’ll say hi to folks in the beginning and then I want to share a few things with you and then I’ll say hi at the end and I’ll answer any questions we have. But I don’t kind of try to do that in the middle cause it totally makes me lose my train of thought. So anyway, I have been thinking about how to talk about today being good Friday for the last few days and this morning in my reading I read something that really shifted some of my thinking.
So I made a few notes so I could remember to share these few things with you. But here’s the deal. Today in the Christian calendar, it is called good Friday. This week has been Easter week. Holy week as we call it. It starts with Palm Sunday. The day Jesus makes his triumphal entry into Jerusalem as he goes about his week. He and the thing I love about the beginning of this week is there’s a verse that talks about God, Jesus setting his face towards Jerusalem. Like he was determined to go to Jerusalem knowing exactly what would happen to him in terms of his death and crucifixion and then ultimate resurrection, which is Sunday, Easter, Sunday resurrection Sunday at one of the most joyous days or the most important day in our Christian calendar. And so it’s a big week and I know there’s a lot of uncertainty and lack of hope and, and just people really struggling with the current covert crisis here on April 10th, 2020.
And so I wanted to talk to you a little bit about this. I always wondered why they called it good Friday. I remember as a kid the first time hearing that and thinking, why do they call it good? I don’t understand. This was a terrible day for Jesus. Because it was the day that he was actually crucified on the cross back in the Roman times and that was their most excruciating form of torture. And I think what I want to remind us here is that it’s Jesus’ death that really share saved us. And the fact that it wasn’t a cross was the timing he was born in and that that was part of God’s plan all along, but that he suffered incredibly for us so that we could have salvation. And so when I heard about this good Friday, it was like, why is it good?
And I remember my pastor at the time saying that it was good for us. It was good for you and me because in Jesus dying on the cross and taking the sins of the world, your sin, my sin, the punishment for being less than perfect on himself, we were ushered into a hope of heaven. This idea that when we received Jesus, Jesus as our Lord and savior, he then takes on and has paid the penalty for our, our shortcomings, our sin, our failures. And we are seen by God as righteous because of Jesus’s righteousness. And I do remember that day in Maryland. It was, I was 13 years old, so it was many, many years ago over 40 years ago. Wow. that I stood on a beach in Maryland. It was an evening. I was at a youth retreat looking up at the stars and realizing all of a sudden that my life was no longer see if I can do this.
It was no longer about being good enough, about trying hard enough about doing the right thing all the time. It was about trusting that Jesus, his blood was shed for me and that Jesus, his righteousness was what I now was covered by the blood of Christ in terms of not measuring up. I didn’t have to measure up anymore. So I don’t know if that’s a burden for you. The trying harder to being good enough. The the M I write enough, a righteous enough that God approves as approves of me. Let me tell you friends, because of Jesus, he does. When we received that as our covering, we then are seen as righteous before God and are our future and having a secure, and that’s really kind of been on my mind a lot recently too. Yesterday was three weeks since John’s mom passed away and he’s in heaven with Jesus and we have a belief of a future that secure the hope of heaven, this, this eternity with God that we know because we are what we call Christians are followers of Jesus.
We have received his, his forgiveness and the blood of Christ covers our sins. And so we live in a freedom. And I hope today that as you hear this, if you don’t know Jesus as your personal Lord and savior PME, I will hop on a call with you and, and share it with you how that happens. But it’s really pretty simple. It’s understanding that you can never be good enough, you can never do all the right things, you’ll never be perfect, and you don’t have to be because Jesus was for us. And then he paid the penalty and took on. The punishment of sin is death. It says that in the scriptures. And Jesus took that on us. And so all it is is a simple prayer that says, you know, Lord, I want you as my Lord and savior. I give my life to you, come into my heart, Holy spirit.
And we get to receive that covering of Jesus Christ. And then we get to live forever in eternity with our heavenly father. And so that is an incredible, incredible gift that comes as a result of today. And I think that’s why it’s called good Friday. And that kind of gives us a perspective. It is a both a somber day for us as Christians, but also a very thrilling day because it is the day that our salvation became secure. And then there’s the waiting between Friday and Saturday until Sunday, resurrection Sunday. And that was a joyous day for believers all over the world. As Jesus was resurrected from the dead, he conquered death. Death was the penalty for sin. He Rose from the dead. And as a result, we all will rise again. And there’s a whole lot, I can say more about that.
But what I want to focus on today is two things. The first is whatever you’re going through, and this is part of what hit me this morning and in a very deep way that in a way it hasn’t hit me before. And that is that Jesus knows our suffering. Jesus knows our struggle. Jesus knows our sorrow. Jesus knows our pain. He went through all of those things when he lived here as a human on earth, fully human, fully God. And so as I was listening to a sermon last Sunday, and they were talking about the crucifixion, and it’s actually you die from suffocation because they nail your hands and your feet and you’re kind of dragging down like this, and you have to push yourself up by your feet to get a breath and then your body sinks down again. And the pastor was talking about how Jesus knew what it was to struggle to breathe and not hit me like a ton of bricks because I have struggled to breathe in my chronic illness.
And the reality of that very small piece of suffering. Jesus understood. Jesus, lived through Jesus experienced. And it says in Hebrews that he knows all of our temptations. He knows all of our struggling and that he knows. And so I want to say to you, whatever you’re going through today, whatever you’re struggling with, whatever questions, whatever hurt, whatever pain, whatever doubts, whatever sorrow. Jesus understands that Jesus knows that and you are not alone in that place. And I think that we find, I don’t know about you, but I find great comfort there because sometimes in my own little myopic world, I think I’m the only one going through anything that’s hard and we’re all going through hard things in our marriages and aren’t with our kids and our jobs. Maybe with your families maybe with your your siblings, it just, there’s the relationships at work with all the things that could be hard in your life.
Jesus says, I know, I get it. I’ve been there. I’ve felt those things. I know your pain. And so being able to kind of tuck yourself up under that truth and realize that you are not alone is really, really important. The other thing that I want to share this morning that was such a big revelation to me was I was doing some reading and this little book called backyard Pilgrim. And I’m doing it with a group of people who are reading through it at lent. And they were talking about how Jesus was tempted to doubt God on the cross when the, when the Romans would yell at him and the Jews would yell at him and the people who hated him would yell at him. If you really are the son of God, if you really are the son of God, come down from the cross and you might remember that in the wilderness the evil one said to Jesus, if you really are the son of God, throw yourself off this cliff and the angels are this mountain.
The angel will rescue you. Or if you really are, then make bread and don’t starve and don’t go through these temptations in the desert. And what hit me today was Jesus had the taunt of the lies to doubt his identity as the beloved son of God. And I know for me there’s times when I, I do wrestle and doubt God’s goodness or doubt, God’s love for me or wonder about where God is in the midst of something that’s hard for me or many of us have talked about, where is God in the midst of the struggle? How can God allow this? And when we look at his son on the cross, there is so much we don’t understand. But what we do know is that Jesus knew who he was and whose he was. He knew in that moment he didn’t give into the lies of the evil one. And this message may just be for me today, I’m doubting God’s goodness in our life about doubting God’s presence in our hardship.
As you can tell, it’s a really personal message to me. All the feelings are are welling up here and coming out of my eyes in tears. I often tell the men I work with it. Women’s feelings are connected to their tear ducts and we just kind of, they will up and it just happens. But this, in this time, this morning as I was reading it was, it talked about Jesus knowing his son ship, knowing that it didn’t matter what anybody said. It didn’t matter the tons of the evil one. It didn’t matter his circumstances, which were pretty dire at that point. What he knew to be true was that God, the father said, this is my son in whom I’m well pleased. I love him, I love you. And in that moment I can just picture Jesus kind of tuning out the lies and knowing the truth, tuning into the truth, tuning out the lies, tuning out the doubts, tuning out the tonnes and tuning into the truth.
The truth being that he was the beloved son of God and that God had him in the Palm of his hand. And so in this time of struggle on this, you know, Holy Thursday, Nope, not only Thursday on this good Friday, this Holy week of Easter. I just want to invite you to pause and think about the doubts that thing that might be coming in, the doubts that might be taunting you about God’s goodness, about God’s provision, about God’s presence in your life. And I want to invite you as I’m inviting myself today and really leaning into this reality of what do I know to be true about what God says. God says we are his beloved children. God says he is here with us. Always. God gave the Holy spirit so that when we have these doubts, we can say, help me Holy spirit, to believe the truth about you, to believe that you are in this, to believe that you will work all things together for good.
Those are what the scripture say. Those are the truths that we have to clean too. When our minds might go into doubt. And if we go all the way back to Genesis, that’s really how the enemy got Adam and Eve to doubt God. Did God really say, is God really good? And so in this time of you know, we’re in week four, we’re finishing up week four, week four of being quarantined, of wondering about our future is about wondering about maybe the, the fissures in your relationships, wondering about your future with the economy. Wondering about, you know, for me it hit me the other day, you know, when this quarantine is over, Kobe is still going to exist. I’m still going to be at risk. What does that mean for me? And the doubts about how God will care for me or take care of my loved ones. And so in those moments of doubts, I want to invite you to tune out the lies and tune into the truth that God loves you so much that he died on the cross. Oh gosh.
To save us, to spend eternity with us and not just the eternity with us, but to bring his Holy spirit to be with us in every moment of every day. In the midst of all, it’s hard in the midst of whatever you’re going through in the midst of the doubts that you might be having in the midst of your working and trying to be good and all the things that play. Guess what? And so today I just want to invite you to spend a few minutes to pause and remember that you are God’s beloved child, that he is with you in this time and that God is good in the midst of all of what is hard. There’s a song I posted last night and it’s of the Nashville in Nashville. There’s all these people who have beautiful voices and they all live in Nashville and they’re part of worship team and the church churches all over Nashville.
And so right below this post there is a compilation of them singing it as well with my soul. And that’s really what we get from this Easter, this good Friday, this resurrection Sunday that no matter what is happening in our lives, no matter what the circumstances are, it is well with our souls because of who Jesus is because of what Jesus did. Because of who God says we are as his beloved children. So with me today, I want to invite us to tune out the lies and tune into the truth and remember that God is on the throne, that he will work all this for good, that he is with us in the midst of whatever we’re struggling with today. And we too can choose to sing it as well with my soul. I hope you and your family have a blessed Easter weekend. I will be back here on Monday with some kind of announcements about how we’re going to do this a little differently at the end of week four, I’m working on some, some new ideas and I will share them with you on Monday at noon Eastern time, nine Pacific time, blessings to you and yours.
And thanks for joining me today.