One part of the Good Friday story that has always intrigued me is how when Jesus died, the big curtain in the temple tore from top to bottom. Behind this curtain was the really special place, where God’s presence was. Only the high priest went in here, and only he went once a year, to offer a sacrifice and make things right with God on behalf of all the people.
But when Jesus died, he took down this barrier. Because he made the ultimate sacrifice, we are no longer separated from God. We have direct access to him now. We can walk right up to him with our heads held high and no shame. We can meet with him and talk with him. With the God who created us and the world we live in. With the God who knows our every thought and need. With the God who gives us real life.
Jesus died so we could find real life. A free life.
So we can be free from having to strive to impress other people or even to impress God, because he knows who we really are and thinks we’re amazing! We can be free from stress about our future because God has it all worked out and knows what he’s doing. We can be free from beating ourselves up for mistakes we’ve made because Jesus paid for it once and for all. We can be free from fear because we can trust in the God who has promised to always be on our side.
But I find that I put up my own barriers that Jesus sacrificed so much to remove. I rely more on what I can and can’t do than letting God do his thing with me. But Jesus once said he was the only way to get to God. To the giver of this free life. I can’t get that on my own.
And Good Friday is where it all happened. This is where real life begins. I have no idea why I ever try it any other way.