WHAT’S SO GOOD ABOUT FRIDAY?
As a public school teacher more than fifty years ago, I still remember the clang of the dismissal bell on Friday afternoon, and the sense of relief that washed over me, as the last little hiney wiggled out the door. Sitting at my desk I savored that brief moment, when those stress fighting endorphins were released flowing to the very tips of my toes relaxing every fiber of my being.
Actually, I enjoyed teaching, and I loved my little urchins, and at the same time, I was ecstatic that I wouldn’t be required to look into their shining faces again for another sixty hours or so.
TGIF! Thank Goodness it’s Friday, or Thank God it’s Friday!
This well known, well used phrase is said to date back to 1941, at Ohio State University, where a group of undergraduates formed a booster club and named it “Thank God it’s Friday.” Doesn’t that sound just like a bunch of college kids?
While the phrase TGIF can trace its origin to the heartland of America, there are slight narrations or other equivalents used by peoples around the world. No matter how it is said, each expression serves to celebrate the end of the work week or school week anticipating a week-end of fun and relaxation–no school, no work, more sleep, and family time.
My favorite time is Saturday afternoon—an afternoon, when there is absolutely nothing required of me. I don’t have to get dressed. I don’t have to put on makeup. I can sleep, read, eat, watch T.V. or do nothing.
Sadly, those afternoons are very scarce—almost none existent. It is my understanding that, for many if not most people, weekends are every bit as stressful as any other day. All responsibilities that cannot be discharged Monday through Friday must be squeezed into the weekend, and we return to work on Monday more tired than when we left.
Truth is, stress has become one of the main ingredients of life, and there seems no way to avoid it. Medications, psychologists, psychiatrists, therapists really have no lasting effect.
So! What is so good about Friday?
Friggatriskaidekaphobia is the fear of Friday the 13th. Some say this day has been associated with misfortune since the 13 hundreds. Seems the fear is very real affecting millions of people, and it is estimated that businesses, especially airlines, suffer from severe loss on Friday the 13th.
For the fearful there is no escape, for all years will have at least one Friday the 13th, but cheer up, there will never be more than three in one calendar year. Friday, September 13, 2019 is the next. Mark it on your calendar.
Others believe the myth has a Biblical origin, citing the fact that Jesus was crucified on a Friday, and there were thirteen guests at the Last Supper the night before the crucifixion.
However, I must tell you that, rather than being the source of fear, Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection, on the third day, was and is the only source of hope and redemption for mankind.
Let me tell you the story. It is found in the Gospel of John, chapters 18 and 19. Read it for yourself. After Jesus had prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane following the last meal with His disciples, like a criminal, He was arrested. Early on Friday morning He stood before Caiaphas, the High Priest. Then He was taken to Pilate, the Roman Governor of Judaea. Upon the insistence of the Jews and their leaders, Pilate finally released Jesus to them to be crucified. He was beaten, and a crown of thorns jammed upon His head. Robed in purple bearing His own cross, He was led to Calvary, where He was crucified between two thieves.
Jesus’ death was the sure fire, fool proof, unassailable, guaranteed, fail-safe, never-failing antidote for this world’s wickedness, hurt, sadness, failure, and, YES, the stress that results from the mess we have made.
On that Friday morning, when Jesus committed Himself to this horrendous death on the cross, when He said, “It is finished,” and bowed His head and died, the Spiritual Endorphins, His own precious blood, flowed from Calvary providing forgiveness, peace, rest, hope and healing for the weary soul—Redemption for all mankind.
Jesus’ last words, “It is finished,” were words signifying that God’s work was complete. This sinless man had been obedient to the Father’s plan sacrificing His very life. Nothing else need be done. He did it all for you. He did it all for me. The only piece left in this puzzle is our acceptance of the sacrifice He made.
So, what’s so good about Friday?
This Friday in particular points forward to new life beginning on resurrection morning, when Jesus arose from the grave. That’s what’s so good about Friday!
Matthew 28: 5-6. “But the angel answered and said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come see the place, where the Lord lay.’”
The old song says:
“He lives. He lives. Christ Jesus lives today.
He walks with me and talks with me
Along life’s narrow way.
He lives. He lives salvation to impart.
You ask me how I know He lives.
He lives within my heart.”
BLESSED GOOD FRIDAY and GLORIOUS EASTER to YOU!
Remember, the sun will come out tomorrow!