The Spiritual Cure from the Golden Hour

People celebrate Holy Week in different ways and for different reasons. Some are off to a holiday, some for a meditation week, and for the others, it’s a long weekend where they can enjoy an “all-you-can-sleep” treat.

I wanted to have my Holy Week be special, but I had a very rough start of the week instead. I was bombarded with so many anxieties. I was even troubled with the things that in the end, humbled me when I learned that it was something that I should not be worried about – at all.

What a shame to worry about things that you should not worry about in the first place and to think that you can solve everything on your own. It was a rough start as I was, once again, unfocused. But slowly, God began recalibrating my heart, as I confessed how weak and “damaged” I was apart from Him.

Sometimes, we are tougher on ourselves than God is on us. Just like in the yearly tradition we have here in the Philippines called “Penitensya” or Penance, our tendency is to hurt ourselves. We beat ourselves with the pride and selfishness in our hearts. We hurt ourselves and think that after some time, we’ll be numb enough not to feel the pain anymore. But in the end, the pain remains. On our own, we’re left untreated.

Yes, I had a rough start to the week. But it also made a way for me to contemplate more on what Holy Week is all about. As God was healing my heart, I was reminded as well that I can never heal myself, because He already healed me. I can no longer try to rescue and save myself, because once and for all, God made a way and finished the work for me through Jesus. I am already saved (even from myself).

On my own, I am left exhausted by “performing”, but through Jesus, I can enjoy the fullness of His unmerited favor (grace), and His faithful and unconditional love. I can be free and whole. For me, that’s what Holy Week is all about. To be reminded that “it is finished”.

That day, God also confirmed “the cure” through His Word:

“Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into the place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory. 

We can rejoice too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love. 

When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, He will certainly save us from God’s condemnation.

So now, we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God. 

(Romans 5:1-6, 9, 11)

My week had a rugged start which eventually calmed down as I was reminded to focus my eyes and heart to “the finished work”. My heart was healed but God was not yet done in letting me know about His great love for me.

The next day, rays of violet started entering the slat of my blinds. As I adjusted the blinds of my window and took a peek outside, it was more than violets. Someone wanted to catch my attention and greatly impressed me on how wonderful His love is. I was surprised, astounded, amazed, and once again, God’s pogi points went up another notch that early morning.

My sleepy eyes suddenly awakened as my soul uttered, “Wow, Your mercy is really new every morning”.

In photography, “the golden hour” is the best time and lighting when you can capture the most beautiful photographs. It is that special time, the first few hours before sunset and after sunrise, which shows magnificent and soft range of colors. Because of that special morning, the golden hour will have more significance to me than ever. Every day, as long as the sun sets and rises, I shall be reminded of God’s mercy and love to me. Through Him I am healed and whole. And for that, I am eternally grateful. Thank You Jesus.

More than the violets…

Psalm 19

5.40AM

5.40 am: “The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display His craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make Him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard.” (verses 1-3)

5.41AM

5.41 am: “Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world. God has made a home in the heavens for the sun.” (verse 4)

As I took a closer look…

5.44AM

5.44 am: “It bursts forth like a radiant bridegroom after his wedding. It rejoices like a great athlete eager to run the race.” (verse 5)

5.45AM

5.45 am: “The sun rises at one end of the heavens and follows its course to the other end. Nothing can hide from its heat.” (verse 6)

It was beautiful. And as the colors changed, I looked closer and saw a shadow of an “Exodus” in the dark clouds.

5.51 am: "The instructions of the Lord are perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart. The commandments of the Lord are clear, giving insight for living. Reverence for the Lord is pure, lasting forever. The laws of the Lord are true; each one is fair. They are more desirable than gold, even the finest gold. They are sweeter than honey, even honey dripping from the comb. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you. O Lord, my rock and my redeemer." (verses 7-10, 14)

5.51 am: “The instructions of the Lord are perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart. The commandments of the Lord are clear, giving insight for living. Reverence for the Lord is pure, lasting forever. The laws of the Lord are true; each one is fair. They are more desirable than gold, even the finest gold. They are sweeter than honey, even honey dripping from the comb. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you. O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” (verses 7-10, 14)

* Exodus |ˈeksədəs| |ˈɛksədəs| |ˈɛgzədəs| |ˈɛksədəs|- the second book of the Bible, which recounts the departure of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, their journey across the Red Sea and through the wilderness led by Moses, and the giving of the Ten Commandments. The events have been variously dated by scholars between about 1580 and 1200 bc.

What are you enslaved by today? Your past? Addictions? Unforgiveness and bitterness? Disappointments? Past failures and hurts? Worries and fears? Illness? Pride?
Today, decide to break free, be healed and victorious as you follow the Light. Enjoy the “golden hour”.
❧ ❤ ❧

“But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in His wings.” And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.” (Malachi 4:2)

May you have a healing and freeing time this Holy Week. Enjoy the Sun. The Light has always been around.

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