On this Good Friday, the sun is out. There is a soft breeze blowing through the grass and trees surrounding my deck. There is a hint of the ocean on that breeze, which fills my senses as I breathe in deeply. Birds call out to one another, lizards with bright blue bellies skitter by, Grace’s bright red hammock blows gently down at the bottom of the yard, surrounded by grass so tall, the tops of the blades are now soft and pink and flowered like stalks of wheat, swaying this way and that, this way and that.
On this Good Friday, I am out on my deck and not at my desk. Good Friday is a stock market holiday, which means I don’t work today. The phones are silent, the madness of the emails and the finances and the scheduling is stilled, the futures have frozen in time and I am free to just be. To not think, to not deliberate, to not act or worry about acting or worry about making eye contact with people, which will create a connection, which will lead to expectations, including the expectation of acting. Once acted, there is no unacting. Once acted, the future has forever been altered. But today, the stock market is closed, which means no futures are being altered.
I am free to unact.
I am free to be still.
There is nothing to do except be and listen as every individual blade of grass that blankets my yard, along with the leaves in the surrounding trees, blow together, beating against one another gently, in a quiet symphony of stillness, while the expectation of what is to come grows.
On this Good Friday, I remember last night’s stripping of the altar and the darkness that followed. The instituting of the holy sacrament of Christ’s body and blood, the command to love one another, then the betrayal, the loneliness in the garden, and the arrival at this day. This day we call Good Friday.
On this Good Friday, I remember this morning’s prayer time, in a sanctuary with a stripped altar and a cross veiled in black. There is no cross to acknowledge, no sign of the cross being made, no beauty and no song. My body wants to do the familiar movements that have become a part of my very being. Denying myself these comforts makes me realize how much I long for them. We hear the story of Christ’s passion and the denial jumps out at me at this end of the season of Lent; this season of denial, these very days of denial.
He said he would be with us always, even unto the very end of the age.
And so we wait.