I haven't been doing overly well in the religion department lately. However, whatever I might feel must pale in comparison to what the disciples must have felt on this day some two thousand years ago. When you invest all you have, even your life, in following a person and believing that he is the Messiah, only to watch the authorities crucify him - that kind of devastation has to be beyond comprehension. The total hopelessness of the situation is staggering. Despite the false image some try to create, Christianity is not a religion of earthly glory. I hate to break it to you, but there's no fame and fortune about it. At one point, it was a failure defined by a man slowly and painfully dying on a cross. That man happened to rise again, but the point stands: on this so-called Good Friday, the man claiming to be the Messiah was nailed to a cross and died an ignoble death.
And I have no religion
And I don't know what's what
And I don't know the limit
The limit of what we've got
I've been thinking about those four lines today. It's one thing to have a weak, lukewarm faith in dire need of a spark. It's quite another for your Messiah to die before your eyes. The person who is essentially your religion is bleeding, dying ... and ultimately dead. You really don't know what's what. It's desperation, woe, despondency, gloom, defeat, whatever you want to call it. Put simply, it couldn't be worse. Where do you go from there? You feel the limit, the limit of the human life that we've all got - the ultimate limit that is death.
What I think is the wonderful side of Christianity is that it doesn't know the limit of what we've got. It rises again in the face of despair and confusion. The glory of the resurrection is not earthly and it defies the limits that we have down here. Too many people have twisted Christianity into a restrictive religion that can be stifling and suffocating, when it is actually something much different, something that doesn't know the limit of this life, that soars much higher, that tears down the walls and reaches out to touch the flame where the streets have no name. Christianity is defiant, surging forward past earthly limits, setting the soul free from the shackles of the fallen world.
And if that isn't inspiring, I don't know what is.