Friday, July 13, 2012

The Hope of Good Friday

FORT WORTH, TX, April 21, 2011 – Tomorrow is Good Friday. It represents the gift given to all of us.
Good Friday is a gift?? Yes.
It was the day Jesus was tortured so bad that He didn’t look like a man anymore. He carried the cross on His mangled body from the palace of Pontius Pilate to Golgotha, nailed through the flesh to it, and then died.
Three days later He rose from the dead conquering Death, Hell and the grave.
Yes, this is a gift. It is the gift of Hope.
Doesn’t make much sense, does it?
But that is the gift that was given by One to us all.  
From Hope all other gifts are possible. And the Hope that Jesus gives is available to all people. No matter who you are or where you are at in life it’s yours for the taking.
You don’t have to change a thing about yourself to get it either. Jesus meets you right where you are.
My beliefs firmly state that all people were created by God, and that evens the playing field of human worth.
They also state that all humanity is responsible for the torture and death of Christ; not just one group of people. Just a couple of chapters when Pilate ordered the torture and crucifixion Jesus states, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)
This means that if Jesus forgave the Jews and Romans for what He suffered, then no one else has the right to hold it against anybody else.

According to scripture Jesus accepted His burden freely for all human beings. Not just a certain few - and no one forced Him.
He is the perfect Lamb sacrificed for our sins; taking the punishment so we wouldn't have to.
This is what is in my heart but I also respect a person’s right to believe what they feel is right for their life.
While it is an abstract ideal, one can get a sense of putting their hands around it. Once you grab on to Hope life becomes instantly more bearable.
Hope is yours to keep unless you let it go yourself. It is not taxable, wiped from your mind, or stolen without your consent. It’s truly one of the things in this world you really do have control over.
Hope for a better life is essential when looking for the passions within. And I for one believe that God created each of us for a specific purpose, or even purposes. Hope is the fuel that gets us there.
Hope comes in many forms. Jesus became Hope and He wants us to do the same for others. Be someone’s Hope. For those broken in heart and mind. Jesus’ words in Matthew 25 express what it means to those who receive that support:
“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat…” (Matthew 25: 35-36)
Look beyond the obvious for other things that all humans hunger for.
What about the souls who have brains that don’t function properly? What about people who face such agonizing circumstances that they cannot see past the pain? Put yourself in their shoes:
“…I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink…”
What is thirst? Webster’s Dictionary lists craving as one definition of the word.
Is someone you know craving comfort and understanding? Love and acceptance? We all do from time to time. Remember that when you are called upon to put yourself out of your comfort zone for another.
And if the cost seems too much for you just remember that treating others with basic respect and dignity fills many a belly and quenches the greatest of thirst.
And Jesus said,
“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’” (Matthew 25:40)

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Welcome! Here is the first column I sent to my editor this morning. It should be posted today or tomorrow.
I want to state for the record that unless a comment is really ugly and uncalled for I will post them. I don't care if the opinion of someone else differs from my own. I am a firm believer in Freedom of Speech and that everyone has a right to their opinions and to express them.
I also believe we can learn from others no matter how different their life experience is from our own.