Thursday, March 29, 2012
Holy Week and Good Friday: Invitation to a Deeper Life
Most of the time we as Christians are far too easily satisfied with a shallow walk with God. We settle for an acquaintanceship with Jesus instead of a robust friendship. We nibble at God’s Word instead of feasting on it and digesting it, making it part of our very being. We want faith without its accompanying repentance. We rush through a quick prayer list but never listen to the Lord speaking to us. We try to witness, but in reality we have little to say to unbelievers since we ourselves have not encountered God radically transforming us.
Although we often tell ourselves that we are doing just fine as believers, underneath we know there must be more. There has to be so much more to a vibrant walk with God than anything we are experiencing!
Holy Week is an invitation to a deeper spiritual life. By “deeper” we mean putting our roots down further in the Lord, loving God on a whole new plane, and soaking in Scripture so it becomes our daily bread. It means seeing the Lord radically alter our thoughts, attitudes, word and deeds.
A deeper life entails substantive transformation in our lives—down at the root level. The word “radical” comes from the Latin for “root.” Radical change is therefore transformation at the root level instead of superficial change on the surface.
Holy Week is an opportunity to take a hard look at ourselves and our walk with God. As we walk through this week before Easter--observing the Last Supper on Thursday, Jesus’ passion on Friday, and the emptiness and waiting of Saturday—we have time for the Lord to search us within. Since the early centuries of the church, Christians have set aside these days leading up to Easter as t time for serious “spring house cleaning” within.
A deeper life with the Lord begins with honesty—being real. Where am I right now? How am I genuinely walking with God, and where have I strayed off the path?
During Holy Week, take a few minutes to write down some reflection to these questions:
-Where am I with God at this point in my life?
-How close or how far away from the Lord has my daily life been over the past couple of months?
-How do I want to go deeper with Jesus?
-What hinders me from being more open and vulnerable with him?
You may want to share these answers with a friend—someone who you can be candid with and someone who cares enough about you to check back and see how you are doing.
Holy Week is a time of redirection—setting a new course in life. The word “repentance” comes from the Greek metanoia. Metanoia means to change our thinking or our direction in life. It means we were headed one way but now we are turning around 180 degrees and heading in the opposite direction. Repentance is not simply saying we are sorry. Rather, it means that we move deliberately in the other direction.
What area of your life is sliding in the wrong direction? It can be an action or an attitude. It can be what you say or what you do. It can also be what you are failing to do.
Don’t Miss the Opportunity
In our anticipation of Easter, let us not miss the opportunity for reflection that Holy Week offers us. Let us receive its invitation to enter more fully in the deeper life with Christ than we have ever before experienced!
© 2012 Glenn E. Myers