Good Friday - April 10, 2020
Bible Text: “Then He bowed down His head and gave up His Spirit”
The human race lies in the situation of death. The mortality of the pandemic is close to hundred thousand already. Those who were diagnosed with positive corona virus exceed 1.5 million globally. Hundred million people approximately had lost their jobs and their sources of livelihood. Rich people too are losing their investments. Companies are shutting down businesses. Government coffers are running short of revenue. Everybody is losing. Losing is indeed a form of dying.
We are commemorating the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ. Do not let this Holy week pass without having the real experience of death. This time of pandemic is telling us that we cannot definitely avoid death while still on earth. The question that is worth pondering is how do we enter into the very experience of Jesus Christ in His suffering and death? Accepting death in our life is to pray for our situation in a complete atmosphere of silence. The first reading which is taken from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah describes Jesus as a lamb that is led to the slaughter and like a sheep before the shearers, He is silent and He did not open His mouth. How do we find our life nowadays? When boredom strikes, how do we manage our self and our family? Do we just let the day go by wasting our precious time? Those who are struggling to meet both ends due to lack of financial resources, do we grow irritable or curse God? In these times of discomfort, can we still smile and still count the Lord’s blessings? This is indeed a real time to experience death. When boredom strikes, instead of killing your time, spend it to educate and catechize your children. When you are struggling, blaming God will never help us, rather pray to the Lord to strengthen your faith so that you can carry your own cross in this time of trial. When you feel discomforts in life, remember God’s blessings and graces instead of lingering on misfortunes in life. This is how to be united with Jesus in His suffering and death. Pray in the silence of your heart that you may do His will in this kind of situation.
Death is dying for others. The Letter to the Hebrews made mention about Jesus Christ as the High Priest who is able to sympathize with our weaknesses. Jesus Christ had abandoned His comfort zone in His Father’s kingdom and became one with us in our sufferings as the consequence of our sinfulness. He lived like us so that He will be able to experience how it is to live far away from home and isolated from the Father. Sympathizing is entering into the very experience of those who are in difficult situation. Fasting and abstinence are perfect opportunities to be united into the experience of people who are agonizing due to this pandemic. The deprivation is an opportunity to experience how it is to live in misery and how it is to go hungry for a very noble purpose. Keep in mind that Christian charity is not just all about giving; it is sharing in the spirit of sacrifice. Like Jesus, He suffers and emptied Himself because He wanted to save us. Likewise, we will observe fasting and abstinence because we want to share the fruits of our observances to the less fortunate in our society. We die so that others may live.
Jesus reminds us, if you die with me, you will also live with me. This very day is being called Good Friday because we welcome bad things in our life so that we can do good to others. Death is a time for emptiness so that we can receive life in Jesus Christ.