Tindell Baldwin »

Good Friday 2003

I promised my mom I would go with her to hear my brother at our church’s good Friday service as long as she would let me go to a party right afterward. I was suddenly regretting that decision as we pulled up at the church. It was already seven o clock and I knew most of my friends would be drunk with out me. As we made our way into the candle soaked sanctuary something came over me like a wave of relief, I could almost feel God in this place. I quickly pushed it out of my mind, God had no place in my life.
They had set up the stage in the middle of the sanctuary with chairs surrounding it, I saw my brother playing the guitar by the cross they had set up in the middle of the stage. We sat in right in front of him and I gave a tiny wave. He was the only reason I ever went to church, my pride in his talent outweighed my hatred of church.
He starts to sing and I try to ignore the words as they seem to wash over me, “Jesus paid it all, all to him I owe, Sin had left a crimson stain, he washed it white as snow”. I couldn’t help but wonder if he could really wash my sin away? I knew my sin was more of a black cloak rather than a crimson stain but for a second I wondered.. Could he set me free? Could he take this broken heart and fill it? Could he forgive the horrible things I have done to my family and friends? What about drinking? Well I have to drink, I don’t know how to be fun with out it and i’m in love, or am I? More words I try to ignore, “Oh praise the one who paid my debt, and raised this life up from the dead”. I knew I had a debt, that I knew. I knew I had too much sin for one man to take on. I needed my own cross. I needed my own Jesus and just like most men couldn’t I told myself Jesus could never help me.
I tried to stay strong and keep my thoughts on what I was doing after this but for some reason the tiny voice I had been trying so hard to destroy came to life. My heart began to quicken and I could almost feel forgiveness, I just had to ask. I didn’t want it though, I wasn’t ready to change so instead I let the tears fill my eyes and overflow down my cheeks. I cried for my broken heart and for the shame of my sins. I cried because I knew I needed Jesus but I wasn’t ready to give it up. I cried because I wanted to stay in this place forever, sheltered from the pain of the outside world. Sheltered from yesterdays broken promises and tomorrows failure. I cried because I wasn’t strong enough to make the right choice.
My mom reached her hand over and placed it in mine, a quiet reminder that she was there for me. I knew she was. I knew that one day I would cry because God had redeemed me. I knew one day we might be great friends.

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