If the day Jesus died is now called Good Friday, then our worst days can be called good too.
Good Friday is an important reminder about the power of forgiveness. On the cross, Jesus cried out:
‘Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do’.
What powerful words. Today is a message of love, hope and faith, but it’s also a reminder to forgive. When we refuse to forgive others, it puts knots on our shoulders. Carrying around anger is bad for our health. It impacts our wellbeing greatly.
I have been told over the years that I do a great job of letting things go, sing along with me now here if you like. In October 2013, I was in my first serious car accident in Cyprus. I will never forget an old lady in about her late 70’s, early 80’s, flying out at us without taking into account the huge STOP sign. It was scary. I remember Bonnie, our little girl, who was one at the time, screaming in shock. Thankfully none of us were seriously hurt, even though the car was a complete right off. The lady felt awful. It would have been so natural to be furious with her. She could have killed us. She had spoiled the final night of our holiday, we had a special restaurant booked for sunset but instead were thrown into a nightmare. I approached her and told her not to feel bad, it was a mistake. She looked at me like I was mad. How could I be so nice after all the damage and trauma caused? I was shaking with fear and thoughts of what if. What if the car had hit a few seconds later? Yet, I could see she felt bad enough, so what would more negative words or looks cause? I wanted to let it go and move on. All these years later and I am still carrying around that fear when I drive passed a stop or giveway sign. My stomach churns and I slow down, just in case. But the anger has gone, which helps me to feel lighter.
The truth is, people screw up. We all do. We make mistakes. Perhaps the lady flying around the streets that night wasn’t thinking clearly. Boy, I can relate. Sometimes alchol can make us say things we regret or perhaps stress or not enough sleep. There are times this year that I wasn’t thinking clearly at all, it turned out to be a full blown mental illness that I am now in recovery from. There will be thousands of people right now with poor mental health, going about their day undiagnosed. Our minds are so complicated. Often, hurt people will hurt people without intending to. We are complex beings.
Good Friday is also about the ultimate act of love. Jesus aka God comes to earth to show us how it’s done. To show us how to love and to forgive. Even in death! On Sunday, as we enjoy our chocolate eggs, there is the message of hope. We can get back up again. If the day Jesus died is now called Good Friday, then our worst days can be called good too. What helps? Forgiveness and love. Each and every time. That also involves compassion to ourselves. We all screw up. We can pray for forgiveness. We can meditate and send ourselves so much love. We can rise up so much stronger, with lessons to help others.
This year, more than anything, I have learnt that when we sit in the darkness and accept each day, so much light will then come our way. We will still have knocks and setbacks, but if we focus on the good stuff, we can heal and give others permission to do the same. You got this!
Have a great Easter weekend.