While most people have moved on with their lives following Easter Sunday, there is something I want you to consider about this religious holiday. One of Jesus’ last words before dying on a cross reflects the anguish within his heart and soul. In order for God’s plan to redeem mankind to be completed, Jesus’ heavenly father watched from a distance as his son died. This lack of action caused Jesus to cry out, “my God my God, why have you forsaken me?”
About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud [agonized] voice, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” – Matthew 27:46
If God let Jesus suffer and die, then human beings face a similar fate. Despite God’s love for His one and only son, sometimes it feels like God turns his back on us as well. When Christians are in trouble, most reach out to God in prayer, begging and pleading with the Lord for divine intervention. When a period of time passes without a clear answer, miracles don’t happen or a friend dies, many people feel like God has abandoned them. When God doesn’t act immediately, its not uncommon to believe or think that God has forsaken you.
So he got up and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion for him, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. Luke 15:20.
Behind the scenes, God is more like the father portrayed in the parable of the Prodigal Son. Unfortunately, while on earth Christians must live by faith, not by sight. Human nature craves and longs for signs from God. Yet, faith must remain firm when God is silent. Like a roller coaster that goes up and down, there will be moments when God’s presence seems near. However, faith needs to steer you during periods of darkness. If you lose hope, you too may be tempted to exclaim, “eli, eli, lama sabachthani which translates my God my God, why has you forsaken me into English. In the meantime stay strong or if you have to, lean on others to get you through trials in this life.
by Jay Mankus