Easter and the rejoicing of the risen Christ has been my favorite holiday for a long, long time. However, it took me a very, very long time to understand why today is called "Good" Friday. If you still don't understand, I encourage you - find a church near you that teaches from the Bible and ONLY from the Bible and ask that question.
In the meantime, today is a day of deep, deep reflection for me. Several years ago God brought me to my knees, showing me just how flippant I was being, how ungrateful I showed myself to Him for all Jesus had done for me that Friday so many, many years ago.
In the years since then, I have been brought to my knees by it many times but now in awe. In goose-bump causing awe and disbelief that He would willingly, lovingly take on the burden of enduring God's wrath so I don't ever have to experience it. Such love I can't explain, understand or - in the face of all the evidence - ever deny.
Colossians 2:13-15 states:
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.
This isn't a trivial thing. It can feel quite removed, it can seem stupid (God speaks to that, too - see 1 Corinthians 1:17-25) but it is truth. Life giving, life altering, life saving truth.
That Good Friday over 2,000 years ago was a day of horror, of unfathomable sadness, terror, mockery, pain, derision and hatred but also a day of humility, love and the first step to glory. Triumph. Grace.
On all of that I reflect today and this evening I turn to eager anticipation because the sun will rise on Sunday and I will rejoice because the Son has already risen. He is risen indeed.