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No Ordinary Day

No pictures. Few words. This day. This Good Friday. This day is no ordinary day. My words cannot suffice, serve or go deep enough for the enormity and sheer relevance of this non-ordinary day – the day when, where and how Jesus saved the world from itself. This day is no ordinary day.

The one hymn by Mahalia Jackson that brings me to my very knees, to the core of being – a place where we need to spend more time – Where You There When They Crucified My Lord. Every single day, when I don’t notice another, when I judge and criticize, when I gossip, when I’m impatient and absent of empathy – I am there at the crucifixion. We need a bit more trembling.

“Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
Oh, were you there when they crucified my Lord? (Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble

Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Were you there when they nailed him to the cross? Were you there when they nailed him to the cross? (Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble Were you there when they nailed him to the cross?

(Were you there when they laid him in the tomb? Were you there when they laid him in the tomb? Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?

Well, were you there when the stone was rolled away? Were you there when the stone was rolled away? (Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble Were you there when the stone was rolled away?”

Crucified. Nailed. Laid in the tomb. Stone rolled away.

From crucifixion to rolling the stone three days later. I not only ponder and reverence the suffering of Jesus but of Peter who denied his best friend and Judas who blew it big time for 30 silver coins and could not accept forgiveness and redemption, and of Mary and the women who remained at the foot of the cross in angst, without fear and unmoved. No judgment or consternation, rather a prayer for rapt awareness, deep awakening and grace beyond human understanding to move through to the other side, to the high road, to the open space few are interested in occupying.

Today is the climax of Lent – the ultimate, unimaginable, unfathomable and undeserved, unearned pivot into the most important and relevant third act that changes the world even and especially today – the resurrection, the butterfly, the harvest. Stay in the crucifixion long enough to make it stick, to change your daily life and focus. The ending is the resurrection, the changing forever, the transformation of our very life in this moment and beyond.

In our lifetime, there has been no more relevant, sacred and holy Lent. Breathe it in. Be overwhelmed and overcome by the enormity. And open your arms wide to the mystery of the Cross. We are Easter people only through the suffering and transformation of Good Friday first.

No ordinary day, indeed. Take. It. In. 3 days. Prepare. Accept. Enter.

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