Good Friday – The Weighted Wait

Here is that feeling again. It comes every Good Friday. Even if I pretend this particular Friday is going to be extra good, there is something every Good Friday that still seems to lurk. Something that doesn’t feel like “good” should feel.

With a little bit of quiet self-discovery, I think I figured out that “something.” It is still difficult for me to fathom that the God of the universe, who put together all of this earthen stuff, hung the stars, and lit up the sun, would choose the lowest position of a beaten death to be the absolute sacrifice for you and me. It is truly impossible for me to fully understand that kind of purposeful love. It seems a weight of comprehension too big to lift.

I’ve heard it said that we cannot experience great joy without pain. Even though I know that Resurrection Sunday is coming, the cape of God’s power and positivity that I usually wear feels more like a weighted blanket on Good Friday. But, I think that’s OK. Often gratefulness in my life can look like a party – a celebration, but I’m realizing that it’s OK to redefine what gratitude and honor are a couple of times a year. For example, each September 11 and the birthdays of my grandparents who have passed often come with a palpable sadness. However, time spent waiting, being quiet and thankful can bring comfort and peace to my soul. 

Gratefulness can be a reverent wait. 

Yes, wait, not a weight. God never leaves us to stew or wallow in our uncertainty. This scripture tells us what is going to happen in just 3 days.

I waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the pit,
out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God. 
Psalm 40:1-3

David wrote that psalm 14 generations before Christ’s sacrifice! Talk about a promise full of intentionality! What I never understood about Easter as a kid was God’s promise of Easter – the promise of resurrection, renewal, and restoration. God had already promised and saved the Jewish people countless times. This rescue was for the heathens, the Gentiles. This promise was, and still is, for us.

In the book of John, just four chapters before Jesus is arrested on Good Friday, Jesus outlines His promise: “I am going to prepare a place for each of you. After I have done this, I will come back and take you with me. Then we will be together.” (John 14:3) Fast forward to 3pm on Good Friday, Jesus’ last words on the cross were, “It is done.” Promise kept.

I don’t know what you are waiting for or what your heart is longing for, but God does. He promises a rescue. It is coming and it is OK to cry out for it as David did. Remember, Sunday morning always comes, but, if this Good Friday doesn’t seem very good for you, I would love to cry out with you and pray for you. Please leave a comment below or shoot me an email at 

I hope your wait brings a little more hope and a lot less weight on your shoulders this year because of His promises. It does now for me. Thank you for being a part of this adventure. We can do this together. 

In His service and at yours,

Published by Shawn McCarthy

While serving as the Weekend Experience Pastor at Seacoast Church, I felt God prompting me to share the moments when He would speak His truth into my life through scripture in a way that made sense to me, giving me tangible ways to learn, grow and lead. These promptings turned into weekly emails that I would send my small groups and volunteer teams. I found myself enjoying the process of digging deeper into God’s Word, being stretched by the writing process, and encouraging others in the faith. My lovely wife, Anna, challenged me to begin this blog, so these moments that I have come to call, my “Red-Letter Moments,” can find a home. My prayer is that you will find hope, comfort, and inspiration here, and above all, you will come to know that the God of the universe loves you and desires a personal relationship with you.”

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