Today is Good Friday.
It’s the day we remember the suffering of our Lord – the utter and complete surrender of His perfect life in exchange for our messy ones.
And during this Holy Week, I have been made so unbelievably aware of my mess.
Let’s start with my never-ending need to please people.
I drove a little too fast through our school zone on Monday (didn’t even realize it). Several women I respect got very upset with me and I’ve been feeling so bad for disappointing them.
I got angry that the Happy Baby dumped his pee-filled toilet-training potty all over the bathroom floor and then went and pooped on the carpet in his brother’s room.
I had some insecurity about my job – wanting people to like me and desire to have their kids in my class.
I spent too much money on groceries. Again.
I let the words of another make me doubt my calling in a particular ministry that I love.
I pushed the hubby too far in a conversation instead of wisely holding my tongue.
I paid too much attention to my phone.
I got jealous of a woman who has a super cute new baby with no health issues.
I wasted an entire afternoon feeling sorry for myself over a situation I have yet to fully surrender.
I think my kids ate chicken nuggets 3 times within a span of 3 days.
Add in some pride, fear, impatience, and unbelief and that about sums up my week!
If you didn’t already consider me a highly questionable source, you can do so now.
The point is, there’s a whole lot of ugly going on in this heart of mine.
And being that I am a perfectionist, when I am faced with the realities of my sin, the temptation is always to let the above listed wretchedness take me down.
I mope around or overeat or complain to the hubs that I am worthless, nobody likes me, and a big, fat failure.
Oh, but Jesus didn’t die on the cross so that I could drown myself in a pint of ice cream and self-pity.
Do you remember in the story of Moses when Pharaoh kept refusing to let the Israelites leave Egypt, even under the stress and horror of all the plagues?
The final plague was the worst of all – the death of every firstborn son in Egypt.
God had a plan, however, for His people, the Israelites. He instructed them very specifically to kill a lamb and paint its blood over the door of their homes. If they obeyed these instructions, then the Angel of Death would pass over their house and the firstborn sons would be spared.
When the angel saw the blood, he simply passed over the house.
He didn’t open the door to peek inside and make sure everyone was behaving properly.
God didn’t expect the Israelites to be perfect behind those doors.
It was THE BLOOD that saved them.
And that is our own sweet story, dear friends.
Our lamb is Jesus.
His blood is painted on the doorpost of our hearts.
And we are saved – we are set free!
I am not condemned for that laundry list of ugly I wrestled with this week BECAUSE OF HIS BLOOD.
This news is way more satisfying and joy-filling than ice cream (trust me on this).
When I picked the Happy Buddy up from school recently and asked him how his day was, he immediately burst into tears and confessed that his name had been written on the board due to a poor choice.
In the past, being that darned perfectionist that I am, I have acted disappointed and upset with my son for daring to represent our family so poorly.
As if I really wanted him to feel bad for sinning.
But the Lord showed me awhile back that holding a grudge, looking at my child with condemnation, flailing my arms and shouting, “How could you do that?!” is not at all the picture of the cross.
His response to the sin of His children is always love.
Because he just sees the blood.
Now when my son cried about his consequence at school, I wrapped my arms around him in a giant hug and whispered in his ear, “We all make mistakes, son. Now we must make it right.”
He went to his teacher to apologize for disobeying the classroom rules and then we went to Jesus and apologized.
As our prayer drew to a close and we opened our eyes, I looked at my boy’s tear-stained face and said gently, “It is finished.”
I saw the burden lifted in an instant.
And he said, “Mommy can we have chicken nuggets for dinner?”
We are imperfect people living behind the doors of our homes.
We will have bad moments, bad days, bad weeks…
But all that bad is why Good Friday is so good.
Take that never-ending list of badness and daily remember the all-sufficient, unfailing power of our Savior’s goodness.
He sees the blood.
And today, my friends, it is finished.
Anyone want to celebrate with some Breyer’s? :-)
“He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.” Ephesians 1:7 (NLT)