I awoke this morning doing the same thing I was doing when I went to bed last night: reflecting on our lacrosse loss to Castle (congratulations Knights!). But in the morning light of Good Friday, my thoughts soon passed on to reflections of a different kind, about another night a long time ago. I thought about our loss and the night afterward against the backdrop of the darkest night in human history—the night before Jesus was crucified.
When I finally fell asleep, I slept in peace.
He did not sleep at all, but was roughly moved about from place to place under trial.
I was weary from standing and pacing on the sideline for an hour and a half.
He was given no rest, and likely did not even sit down the whole night.
I recoiled at the slashes and bruises our players took (and gave) during the game, legally and otherwise.
He was bruised and beaten with no regard for rules of any kind.
I cried “foul” at the slightest perceived infraction of justice from the referrees.
His trials were the very height of injustice and yet he uttered not a word in his defense.
I grew angry at the “chippy” remarks of opposing players, and those of our own.
He was mocked and even spit upon by his enemies and made no angry reply.
I wondered if things could have turned out differently if this or that circumstance were changed.
He too wondered if things could be done differently but willingly accepted his circumstances, none of which could be changed because were they were all according to the plan of God for our salvation.
I and my team were defeated.
He appeared entirely defeated, but his apparent defeat was in fact the podium of victory that towers over all others.
I was concerned about the impact of this game on our record and reputation.
He took on himself the record of all the evil things I have done and the reputation of a sinner and a criminal though he was innocent of all charges.
I took some consolation in defeat from the company of my teammates whom I love.
He had no consolation from any company at all, for all those he loved deserted him.
I woke to a morning of bright hope and promise.
He did not wake, for he never slept, but when day came for him it was a day of darkness, gloom and death.
He endured all of these things before being subjected to the most humiliating public execution ever devised by the cruel mind of man so that…
I can be forgiven.
I can avoid the justice of God that I deserve.
I can have victory over all the things that defeat me daily.
I can have peace with God.
I can have hope.
I can have life that endures beyond death.
See you Sunday,