Today is Good Friday, recalling and celebrating the death of our Lord Jesus. Today we are also nine months before Christmas, the celebration of the birth of our Lord Jesus. If it were not Good Friday, we would be celebrating the Feast of the Annunciation.
There was among some early Christians the belief that the annunciation and the crucifixion shared the same date.
But there are deeper connections between these two events, these two feasts.
Both teach us that our God is not a God who lords it over us. Our God became flesh and handed himself over even to the point of death.
This is, for me, the point of Philippians 2: 6-7:
[Christ Jesus], though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave (μορφὴν δούλου), coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross.
But there is another connection, one that causes me to ask what I am called to be and to do.
Mary responded to the angel Gabriel, “Behold the slave (δούλη) of the Lord. Be it done to me according to your word.”
On the Cross, Jesus cried out, “Into your hands I commend my spirit.”
Both Mary and Jesus handed themselves over to the plans of God, leaving aside their own plans.
Our God is a God who empties Himself, who becomes a slave.
Where do I need to be emptied so that God may come and rise within me?
That is my question for Good Friday this year.
Photo is of the El Señor de Intibucá.