Sometimes In Your Faith Journey You Have To Run Alone

When we seek the truth, it is a natural reaction that we will no longer be in the same place and believing the same things as everyone else who has a mutual faith in Jesus. As soon as we seek to understand our faith on an individual level with the Spirit of God leading us rather than simply agreeing with the group doctrines and dogmas, we face the moment I’m talking about.

It’s the moment we realize that our faith is not as simple as we first thought. That there are many questions we have, that God is encouraging us to ask, that the group doesn’t want to talk about; questions the group doesn’t want to ask. But we know if we don’t follow the leading of the Spirit, then we will lose our own passion for being led by the Spirit all together. If we follow the Spirit, to seek, to question, to look for the answers God has laid out before our path, we are only doing what is natural in our walk of faith following Christ.

When we seek the truth, it is a natural reaction that we will no longer be in the same place and believing the same things as everyone else who has a mutual faith in Jesus. It’s that way because it’s a journey. Like a marathon. Everyone is on the journey, but at different places.

The problem with religion is it wants everyone to be in a straight line, arms locked, along the journey. The result is nobody is able to go at their own natural pace, and without the ability to go as the Spirit leads you, you quickly become complacent and lose the desire to seek truth at all. You simply allow others to set the pace, to pull you along, and subtly ‘group think & group belief’ replaces your own ability to think as an individual, to seek, and know what you believe. But to take your own steps in the search of truth, at the pace the Spirit leads you with, is the very essence of what you need to follow Christ. Don’t be afraid of it, don’t deny it; rather, embrace it. To sacrifice it for the sake of keeping the group happy is not a sacrifice I think God is asking for.

God wants us to seek him, and if we are to do that, there are times when we have to leave the pack and seek at our own pace. We’re not forsaking the group, but we are accepting that we can’t all believe the same thing at the same time, perhaps when we meet at the end of the race we will. But along the journey, sometimes we have to run a stretch of the path alone; sometimes we have to run even when the group behind us doesn’t understand why. And sometimes we have to run even when we don’t know why. All we know is we are being led, and our heart desires the truth over all.

The journey is long, and the path is not easy, but it is our calling. It is our passion. It is our way.

Run it well.

Radically Loved

The Joy Of Being Different – And Celebrating The Uniquness Of All

At the very basic level of our belief, we believe that we are all made in the image of God. This I completely believe and celebrate. This means at our core we are all exactly the same. We are all equals. We are all one. Because we are all made in the image of God. And what is that image? That image is love (singing L-O-V-E love).

Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1 John 4:8

I think we run into problems, however, when we begin to conform into the outer image of one another, instead of abiding in the inner image of God/love. What I mean is we start to listen to the same kind of music, do the same activities, use the same kind of words and phrases, listen to the same teachings, have the same weekly schedule of events and programs etc. This of course can happen quite easily in a religious setting most easily. But it can happen in any setting/group that is fundamental in its worldview, whether it be religious, political, corporate or what ever.

There is a real danger when we start to conform into the ‘corporate image’ that we begin to actually lose touch with who we really are. It is not noticed as long as you are immersed in this corporate culture, but if you ever come out of it, it is not uncommon to feel lost, wondering if you even know who you are anymore. This is the danger of conforming to the outer image of others for the sake of inclusion.

It’s hard to embrace and celebrate your uniqueness when others want you to be something else–sadly, something a little closer to themselves. While I think we should all celebrate the truth we are the same image on a heart/spirit level, for we are all made in the image of love, we should also celebrate that none of us need to be the same in our outer expression.

I don’t think we’re designed by God to be like one another in our personalities and passionate pursuits. We are designed to be different, to go after different kinds of dreams, to have different hobbies, to see things from different perspectives.

We’re created to desire different things, to be drawn to different kinds of lifestyles, to seek after different kinds of experiences.

I really believe that it is these very differences that make it interesting to spend time together. It is what makes being friends refreshing and rewarding. But to enjoy this blessing, we have to let go of the desire to conform people into our own image.
Radically Loved

Your image is beautiful. But it is yours, not mine, and not anyone else’s, and that’s the way it’s meant to be. When we can simply accept people for who they are, we can participate in beautiful and refreshing friendships. But when we expect people to change, to be more like ourselves, then we can never truly connect with anyone, because we are not looking for individuals to celebrate life with, but candidates we think can be molded into an image closer to our own.

Don’t be scared of those who are different to you, who believe different, live different, see the world different – these people are a blessing from God. If we can overcome our religious desire to conform people into our image, and live with the liberty of embracing and enjoying the uniqueness of others around us, we can also participate in the joy of life on a far greater scale.

Celebrate your unique and wonderful ways. And do likewise with others. We can celebrate both our united image of love, and also enjoy and celebrate all the differences we have as well. It is when we can embrace (instead of separating and judging) the differences of others, we truly begin to see just how we are all the same. We were made to bless one another with our uniqueness. We are all different, we are all made in the image of love, and that is what makes us all the same.

The Spiritual Life

Playing To Win, Losing For Real: A Short Story

The two men, property tycoons, sat opposite each other at the table. Between the two of them they owned most of the real estate in the city. But it was not enough for either of them. No, each of them wanted it all for themselves, and they had become obsessed at achieving that goal.

They bought property from one another when there fortunes were up, and when they needed more cash flow, reluctantly sold property. They were relentless in their pursuit to outsmart the other. One thing was certain. The day would come when one would succeed in his greedy goal. The moment would come when one would fail and declare bankruptcy, to the joy of the other.

One sunny Wednesday afternoon that day finally came. They sat in their usual spot in central park for another round of negotiations. As they had done for the past three decades. It was on this day, after one more bad business deal, one final bad move, that one of the men realized he had lost everything. He had been outsmarted, and he would have to give up his final hotel property to cover his losses. He handed over the last of his property to his old rival, and with a bitter look, told his opponent that he had won. He had defeated him.

At first the other man sat there rejoicing. Thirty years work, and now he had done it. He was the victor. He owned all the property in the city! But then he became quiet, and his rival also. He sat there and contemplated what had just happened. Something he was not quite prepared for.

In winning everything he had focused so hard on winning, he did something else he never wanted to do. He had ended the Game. By ending it, he was suddenly forced to admit that was all it was, just a Game.

Some of the other regulars in the park looked on at this significant moment with great interest. The two men sat as still as statues, their eyes downcast upon their monopoly board. Neither saying a word.

Over the years and decades they had both lost their jobs, their families, their homes and their dignity in their obsession with their Game. The worse of all, they lost their grip on reality, and over the years actually came to believe the game was reality. They enjoyed their passionate pursuits, thinking they were real pursuits, real business dealings.

People had often tried to wake them up, to force them to quit the Game, but they were so deep into it, so focused, they just dismissed their voices. No, they were not playing a Game, they were trying to win the city, and they were close to doing it! That’s what they both thought. Whenever anyone tried to show them they were losing their lives by living in their Game, they just ignored it. They were happy in their reality. They were winning the whole city. They were significant business men. They were like kings. They were important. And then – the Game ended.

Slowly, the man who had won began to weep. He looked at the board, and realized it was all just a game. He thought about his family he had lost, how long ago? Years? Decades? He thought about his life, the life he had missed out on because he had become so obsessed with the Game.

Then he shook his head, stop his crying and gazed over at his opponent.

“You know Frances,” he said. “You’re the best business man I know. In this city, there’s no better opponent than you. I’ll tell you what . . .” he picked up a few hotels from his pile and handed them across the table. “Consider this a gift. Now, let’s see if you can rebuild your empire.”

His opponent’s countenance suddenly changed, and color returned to his cheeks. “Rodger, you truly are an upstanding tycoon. A true gentleman. But be warned, I’m still committed to owning this entire city.”

The spark in Rodger’s homeless eyes began to sparkle once again, “I expect nothing less, my old revival. Now, pass by Go, collect your $200, and let us continue; we have a long day of business negotiations ahead of us.”
“Indeed we do. Indeed we do.”

As so they began playing again, suppressing the short realization they had wasted their entire lives playing a Game. They both focused intensely upon the board, counted their properties and planned out their strategies. This is not a Game, they both thought to themselves, No, this is the real world.

WWAPD?

WWJD: “What Would Jesus Do?” Do You Really Want To Know?

Once upon a time, a mother made her son a wristband. On it was written: WWJD. This, of course stood for: What Would Jesus Do?’ She instructed her son to look at the wristband before making decisions on how to live his Christian life.

A week later she was shocked to see that her son had become friends with prostitutes, was hanging out with ‘sinners’ – even buying people who were already drunk yet another round of beers!

Worse still, he had walked into their church the previous Sunday and tore down the book store, overturned the tables and threw the cash register through the window, he then made a whip and chased the pastor out of the building, declaring he was turning God’s house into a den of thieves.

Most shocking was what happened when his mother went to picket the local abortion clinic. To her embarrassment, her son was also there, but he was standing with the women who just had an abortion, and yelled at the protesters: “You who is without sin, throw the first stone!”

The mother was very distressed, but fortunately she found a solution to this terrible problem. She made another wristband, this time it read: WWAPD, this, she explained to her son, stood for: What Would A Pharisee Do? She took the old WWJD wristband and burned it.

Since her son has been wearing the new wristband, looking at it to help him make his decisions, he has become a dedicated tither, a public prayer warrior, an active condemner of ‘sinners’, a passionate defender of the Old Covenant law, and has a great reputation as a godly young man amongst other religious people.

Needless to say, the mother is very happy now. She only wishes Jesus would take notice and follow her son’s good example.

The Man Who Forgot His Heart

Using The Bible To Prove Your Beliefs… Even When They Are Wrong

A few years ago a family member told me about a great new book they read. It was by a new age/positive thinking writer. My relative said to me, “Hey, you might like his stuff too. He uses a lot of Bible verses to prove his points, but probably doesn’t interpret the Bible the same way as you, but it’s good stuff.”

This intrigued me, not sure what he meant, so I asked him for an example and he said, “Well, for example, he quotes Jesus’ words about the 10 virgins, how 5 were ready in the moment, and the other 5 were not. . . and this was about making sure you lived in the moment, to be ready to enjoy your life in the moment.”

There and then I realized something quite shocking: Anyone, really anyone, can use the Bible to prove their ideas/beliefs.

Correctly-dividing-the-word

The reality is that regardless what anyone believes. Not just a Christian, but anyone at all, once they have decided upon what they believe, they could then go to the Bible and find enough Scripture references to support their beliefs.

Often when someone presents us with a theology or doctrine that directly opposes our own, we say something like, “Well then, you don’t believe the Bible!” and no matter how many Scripture verses they show us, we remain adamant they are simply avoiding the truth of the Bible.

The real truth, however, is we may be actually avoiding the uncomfortable situation of confronting our own interpretation of the Bible, and facing the facts it may be wrong. It is, after all, much easier to simply dismiss someone as not believing the Bible, then to acknowledge the Bible can be interpreted in another way, and that this way may even make a lot more sense than our own current interpretation.

Like the example in my comic above, it’s easy to quote the Bible to support our theology, and simply ignore the parts of Scripture that oppose our theology, but it’s a sad way to live out our faith, isn’t it? It takes more courage to accept that while Scripture may be God breathed, that doesn’t mean our interpretation of it is. Just because we can use some Scripture to support our belief claims, doesn’t mean that those beliefs are unquestionably true.

Sure, we can prove out theology in the Bible, but when someone shows you scripture that directly opposes your theology/doctrine, do you also give weight to it, or just ignore it?

Discovering truth is not as simple as having an idea about it, and tagging a Bible verse to the end of it. In reality, the desire to know the truth will take you beyond the Bible, it will take you all the way into the heart of God. It will depend on your walk with the indwelling Spirit of Christ. Not just the Bible you can read, but the Spirit who can lead you into all truth.

I am not suggesting to abandon the Bible. On the contrary, I am suggesting we truly appreciate it, and understand everyone has an interpretation of it, and if we want more than our interpretation to count, if we also want God’s insight and leading, then we also need to be willing to lay down our interpretations long enough for the Spirit to be able to change our direction if needed, to realign us with God’s ultimate ways, and to help us then see the Scriptures with fresh eyes.

We are called to be led by the Spirit, and to do that, sometimes it means laying down our current interpretations of Scripture long enough to let the Spirit take us on a personal tour of God’s heart and back, so when we sit back down afterwards we can see the Bible in a way we could not see it before.

bible-study

Being Led By The Spirit, Not By (Other People’s) Bible Obsessions

It’s interesting that when Jesus walked the earth it was the children, the poor, the uneducated and the illiterate that understood Jesus the most – in contrast, it was the Scripture scholars, the experts of the Bible, with their explanations of Scripture and long drawn-out interpretations of what the written word meant who didn’t understand him at all.

In this day and age, while it is possible to cram all the Bible reading we can fit into a day, the reality is it will profit us nothing if we value it over the voice of the Holy Spirit within us. More than that, it can actually be the very thing that pulls us away from understanding the heart and ways of God.

The Pharisees spent so much time in the Scriptures they failed to actually realize the point of the Scriptures all together, making the Scriptures of zero help to them in their spiritual walk. If anything, their devotion to Scripture and their interpretations of it only pushed them to rage against the truth all the more.

You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life. John 5:39-40

In reality, we don’t need more Bible in our life, for we are not people of the written code, but rather people of the Spirit; and as such we need more trust in the Spirit dwelling within us. For if we can first rest in this inner reality and be led by the Spirit, then when we do read Scripture, the Spirit will be able to lead us through it and show us things none of us could see by reading the Bible just as a written code.

But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code. Romans 7:6

For the Bible to be of help to us, we need to see between the lines, behind the words, within the message; we need to let the Spirit show us things invisible to those who only want to read the Bible as a plain and simple written code.

Most importantly, we need to realize the Bible can become a stumbling stone to us if we allow it to be used by others to enforce their beliefs upon us. It was those who were the disciples of the Pharisees who also missed the truth of Jesus, for their ‘teachers’ had all the answers from Scripture as to why Jesus was nothing more than a blasphemer.

This is, I believe, why the Apostle John wrote to the church with this encouragement:

“As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit —just as it has taught you, remain in him.” 1 John 2:27

It is interesting because John himself was writing to the church and teaching them things, yet he tells them plainly they don’t actually need any teachers, not even himself, what they need is the confidence to trust The Teacher in them, the indwelling Spirit of God. In John’s day, there were many teachers who were enforcing their doctrines and opinions on the church, most likely using Scripture as their tool to force submission to their way of thinking.

John, then, writes to remind the church that although there are God-given teachers in the body of Christ, the ones who are worth listening to are the ones who are always directing you to trust more in the indwelling Spirit within you.

We could say that the role of a teacher in the body of Christ is not to give answers, but to encourage the body of Christ to ask questions, to seek the truth for themselves, and to trust that the Spirit of Christ within to be their Teacher who will lead them, enlighten them, and draw them closer to the divine reality of God’s nature as they continue in their faith walk.

For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. Romans 8:14

Remember, while the Bible can help us in our journey of faith, it is not what leads us. That role belongs to the Spirit of God within you. Take confidence as the Apostle John wrote, and trust that the anointing in you is real, not counterfeit … and follow the voice of your Good Shepherd, the guiding Spirit within you, as you venture with your indwelling Savior into all truth.

Changing Beliefs: Why Your Beliefs Not Only Can Change, They Should Change

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 1 Corinthians 13:8-10

It’s interesting that the Apostle Paul, who was the man with possibly the deepest revelation of the gospel that ever lived (God’s chosen instrument is what Jesus called him) actually said, “We know in part”. This is an incredibly humble thing to say, and just as important for us to remember; for it means there are more parts that we currently do not know. Meaning, your beliefs/theology will continue to change as you come to understand more, when God shows you another ‘part’, when you continue to seek truth, and find another piece. Not only this, but even at the end of our lives, even with the greater insight, revelation, and truth God shares with us, we will still only know in part. Not until this creation is finished, and we stand before God will we understand the full picture of God, his gospel, and his complete truth.

Often our beliefs change, but once that change happens we think now we’ve ‘got it’ – we think now we really DO have the full truth. While we may have come to understand another important part of the truth, we have to be humble, as the Apostle Paul was, and realize we still only know in part. There’s more parts still to discover; there’s more renewing of our minds to come.

If your beliefs are exactly the same as last week, that’s all right. If they are exactly the same as five years ago, that’s concerning. I say this because our faith is a journey, and along this journey God continues to give us new pieces to his puzzle of truth.

Some of the doctrines you think are the most full-proof, the most foundational even, will come tumbling down at some point, and replaced with a clearer, more divine understanding. The first time this happens it is shocking. The second it is still shocking, but at least not as unexpected. After a while, you start expecting it as part of the faith journey.

Doctrine is the interpretation of man. Popular doctrine is the interpretation of very powerful men, meaning church/denominational leaders who in essence demand people to accept their doctrines or leave; they use the fear of exclusion to keep people agreeing with their doctrines. This is sad, but it’s been happening for centuries, but don’t let the pressure and doctrines of other men/women override the Spirit of Christ in you, your teacher, as you move forward in your faith. Let him teach you. Allow yourself to learn new things from him, even when you favorite preachers are saying the opposite.

A rule of thumb that the Apostle Paul gave us when talking about only knowing ‘in part’ was to remember what we have right here, right now. That is, faith, hope and love. And he particularly drew attention to love, reminding us this is the greatest of all.

For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13: 12-13

While on the journey of faith, seeking and discovering new ‘parts’ of the puzzle of the gospel truth, keep your heart centered on the reality of love. For in the end, doctrines will fade away, but love will remain forever.

sunrise

The New Way of Worship: What Did Jesus Mean? How Radical Could It Be?

Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. John 4:23

Jesus said something truly revolutionary to the Samaritan woman at the well. He talked of a time coming when a new way to worship God would come into reality. What was revolutionary about this is that Jesus was not saying that worship, as it was currently done, would be refined or reshaped, but that worship of God would become something completely new. No longer the old way people knew of, but a radically different way that did not look or feel the same in any form.

Jesus seemed to be talking about the end of the entire old testament concept of worship. The end of going to a temple to sing songs of adoration to God. The end of the raising of hands to try and reach God. The end of the stamping of the feet while the musicians strum their instruments. He was talking about the end of this entire way of worship to be replaced with an entirely new way—the way God truly desires. A way that is of Spirit and truth.

So what is this new way of worship? I believe it is worshiping God through loving others. For when we love those around us, it is because we worship/are devoted to God who is Love. Love is the DNA of our God, and it is a worship-filled life we live when we live a life of love. When we love, we testify to the God we identify with and follow. When we love, we declare without words:

‘God is love—I love because this God first loved me, and I love because I worship this God of Love.’

While I understand this can sound quite radical, isn’t that exactly what we would expect based on Jesus’ words? Anything that is completely new is considered radical, and that is what makes the message of Jesus so incredible to those who desire the new way Jesus promised, yet so dangerous to those who want to hold onto the old order of things.

If our idea of worship looks similar (or even identical) to the old covenant version of worship, is it not time we challenge our own understanding of worship, and ask ourselves what this new way of worship Jesus spoke of could be? What if the new way of worship truly is done through loving others? Would this set you free, or make you feel trapped? Would this match more with the God you have come to know through Jesus, or does the old form of worship make more sense?

What if God is not interested in people bowing down to him as a form of testifying to their devotion to him, but rather he is interested in people loving those around them to testify of their devotion to him? What if loving others is the new way of worshiping God, the way he truly desires? Does that thought inspire you or offend you?

Barry the Good Christian

Yes, Jesus Is With Us … But Do We Act Like It?

One day Barry the good Christian was riding his bike when he bumped into Jesus. It was quite a shock at first, but he was excited to hear that Jesus wanted to spend the day with him. What luck, to have God actually with him.

First thing he did when they arrived at his apartment was stand in front of Jesus for 25 minutes and sing love songs to him. This. Was. Awkward.

After worship Barry informed Jesus it was now time for them to have communion. Jesus smiled, stood up enthusiastically and asked where the wine was. This. Was. Awkward.

Barry informed Jesus very nicely that communion was actually done with grape juice, as this was the biblical way, and Barry always followed the Bible. Jesus seemed to roll his eyes, but Barry wasn’t sure. Jesus then asked what they planned on eating for fellowship. Barry produced two tiny pieces of a cracker.

When Jesus asked why they were drinking grape juice out of a shot glass and holding a tiny piece of cracker, Barry decided it was best to ignore Jesus for a moment while he enjoyed communion. For Barry, it was a great moment of connection. Meanwhile, Jesus was still asking where the wine was.

Next he sat Jesus down as he wanted to share a 3 point sermon with him about how to live a better Christian life. Jesus asked if they could have a simple conversation instead. Barry laughed, thinking Jesus was joking. After 10 minutes Jesus actually fell asleep. Barry falsely assumed he was simply in deep meditation about the anointed message, and so continued for another 30 minutes. At the end, he politely woke Jesus up.

After Barry was sure Jesus was awake and listening he became very serious as he began his altar call. He asked Jesus, very convincingly, if he wanted to accept himself into his heart. In fact, he kept on asking with increasing pressure until Jesus raised his hand, upon which he prayed for Jesus to receive his salvation. Barry was very proud of himself – just wait until his prayer group heard about this!

After Jesus got saved by Barry, he was given a form to fill out all his contact details. Once he got all his details, he strategically walked Jesus towards the door. It seemed that Jesus wanted to hang out for longer, but why? They had already done everything important to the Christian fellowship experience.

Barry gave his best Christian smile, inviting Jesus back at the same time, same place the following week. Jesus, however, didn’t understand his nice Christian smile actually meant ‘It’s time for you to leave now’ and so he remained standing there, explaining that there was still plenty of time left in the day to hang out. This. Was. Awkward.

After Jesus finally got the hint and left, Barry sat on his couch, exhausted. 90 minutes with Jesus, he was convinced, was enough for one week.

Who else but Jesus?

Good Friday – The Cross, The Abandonment, And The Hope

There are times in life where fall into a sense of hopelessness, and in these moments we fear, ‘am I losing my faith?’ or ‘am I not being faithful enough‘ and these thoughts only push us further down emotionally, for if God is with us–we contemplate with despair–where is he?

When we feel so lost, so abandoned, so broken, yet all we desire in life is to know God and be with him, yet in our deepest moment of pain, we ask–where is God?

To believe in God, to know him as Love, to trust in him with all you have, but still, to feel not only disconnection or silence, but an abandonment, is the hardest place to be spiritually. In our hopelessness, when we cannot help ourselves due to utter weakness, when we are at our most desperate, our hearts cry out what our lips dare not–where is God?

This situation, though seeming contradictory to the life of a believer, is itself seen in the life of Christ on this day. Upon the cross Jesus cried out “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” – he said the words in his utter despair that all of us who believe are terrified to say.

If you are feeling a great hopelessness upon your life, and though you dare not say it, you feel in your heart to cry out — my God, my God, why have you forsaken me? – remember that your Savior came and experienced the same, but even greater, and he spoke what we dare not. He felt the very real abandonment of God, yet before he gave up his Spirit he went on to say, “Father, into your hands I place my spirit.”

This too, we partake in- the ‘against all hope, to hope’ and continue to place our very spirit in the hands of God, for even after we feel/experience the sense of abandonment by God, we know he cannot and will not leave us to lie in ruin. No, he will take what is broken and make it new. He will resurrect our hopes and dreams. He will create a victory out of what seems a permanent defeat.

Today, allow all the pain and sadness you feel to be with Christ upon the cross. Speak the words, ‘my God, my God, why have you forsaken me’ with your Christ. Speak the words ‘my Father, into your hands I commit my spirit’ with your Christ. And as you do, remember that beyond what you feel today, God has a plan to make all things new in your life.

We call this Friday ‘good’ because God’s plan did not end at the cross on this day; for Christ who was broken upon the cross, just as for your life and dreams, there is still a great resurrection to come.

Good Friday represents the ashes of life, but a crown of beauty is still to come. Good Friday represents our mourning, but the oil of joy is still to be poured upon us. Good Friday represents our spirit of despair, but the garment of praise is still to be wrapped around us.

Good Friday is ‘good’ because it is the day we hang all our despair and saddness upon the cross, and unite with Christ in this loss, knowing that we will also remain united with him in his Resurrection, when all things are made new.