Site icon Liz Mannegren

A Good Friday, Even in Death

A year ago today, we said good-bye.

In an ugly hospital room, surrounded by friends and family, my mom gave up her failing, earthly body for the arms of Jesus. And if I’m honest, it felt too soon. This wasn’t the script I’d written. There were more grandbabies for her to hold. More laughter and smiles for her to wrap us in. More life.

It seems fitting that this one year anniversary falls on Good Friday: a day marked by death and sorrow. A day for tears and mourning. A day when the clothes are black, the mood somber. But what man meant for evil, God meant for Good — even death upon a cross.

Because Good Friday holds such GOOD news. 

For those of who mourn.
For those who fear.
For those who are hurting and broken.
For us sinners and failures.
For us all.

Today is a good, good day.

Yes, Good Friday is marked by death. But when Jesus went to the cross and willingly laid down His life, He did so knowing that the victory had already been won.

Death has been defeated. And in its place, there is life.

Life eternal.

A God who so loved the world that He sent His only Son to die. To die a horrifying death upon a wooden tree, scarred and scorned, mocked and belittled. Forsaken on a blood-drenched cross, so that we might live — the greatest act of mercy. And here in death, God was glorified.

That is the promise I cling to this Good Friday. Death holds no victory. And while these earthly farewells weigh so heavy upon our hearts, this too is momentary. Our sorrow may last for the night but joy comes in the morning.

When I think about my mom, I think about the life she lived. A life that was woven with the promise of this Good Friday message. This is part of the legacy she left behind: one of faith and hope, prayer and trust in the God who took to the cross for us.

Just thinking about a year without her brings me to tears. My heart aches and misses and longs. And then, it takes great hope. Because one day, I have no doubt, we will get to kneel and worship before the throne of the living God together.

Yes, we’re apart for now.

But I can think of nothing better than knowing, on this good, Good Friday —  she is home.

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