Some of us don't believe there is a God.
Some of us are our own god.
Some of us believe, but choose to separate ourselves from God. We want no part of Him.
Some of us use to feel God's presence, but now He seems absent.
Some of us know God wants nothing more than to be fully with us.
I have experienced all of these.
Jesus experienced separation from God.
When reading the story of Easter- the passover meal shared between Jesus and the disciples, Judas' betrayal in the garden of Gethsemane, the mocking and beating of Jesus by the soldiers, the crucifixion, I had always grasped before that Jesus was taking on my sin, and the sin of the world (my sin alone is enough to bear). This week as I read I am grasping that Jesus was experiencing the separation from God that sin causes.
"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
The power of those words. Webster says that forsaken means "to renounce or turn away from entirely."
We believe that Jesus is "begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, True God from True God, of One Being with the Father."
I can't even wrap my mind around what it meant for Jesus to be separate from God.
I can only recall my own very long season when pride came between God and I, and He seemed absent.
I was lifeless.
So as I read the story again this Easter I read it with a new perspective. In the garden of Gethsemane when Jesus expresses that He is "overwhelmed with sorrow," (Mark 14:34-36) and asks God to take this cup from him. I see Emmanuel God with us, Jesus, longing to remain near God. And, when Jesus breaths His last breath, and the curtain temple is torn in two from top to bottom (Mark 15: 37-39), I see the heart of Father God torn in two, now separated from His Son.
We are created to be children of God, loved by God, to live in His presence, to be fully His, He is to be fully ours.
And His heart breaks from top to bottom when we are not His.
Satan would like to keep us separate from God. He's a liar and a thief. He uses anyone and anything to steal Life from us.
But he does not win. It's Friday, but Sunday is coming!!