I have a super fancy college word that I’d like you and me to learn together.
Ready? Here’s the word – denouement (say it DAY-noo-mahn). Webster’s Dictionary defines it as the final part of a play, movie, or narrative in which the strands of the plot are drawn together and matters are explained or resolved. The “why” behind this college English lesson will make sense soon if you read on.
This week, we commemorate Good Friday… the climax to an epic story that would be the lynchpin moment for all human history.
When Jesus on the cross uttered “It is finished.” and gave up the ghost, the ground heaved, the skies boiled, the veil tore in two, and then… nothing. No angels descending, no trumpet blasts, no chariot of fire, nothing. Most of the witnesses went back about their business for the rest of the afternoon. Just the very closest to Jesus and few others cared for the body of the One who had just given his life for them, while not knowing if it was a real or a hoax.
Saturday. Still nothing. For those that had followed him and given up everything to be with him, that day must’ve felt like a gut punch. Because the story of Jesus ended so violently, and because there had been no angels descending, there was no heavenly trumpet blast, Jesus DIDN’T save himself on the cross… everything felt like a giant, twisted up, doubt-filled question mark in their hearts and minds.
If your life feels like the Saturday after Good Friday – If you’re believing God to move a mountain, heal a sick loved one, mend your family, to make things right – and nothing is happening, then you know how it must have felt for his followers. There are things I’m walking through right now that He is being deafeningly silent on no matter how hard I pray, which can quickly cause me to doubt and second guess whether His promises and faithfulness are really true for me. Can you relate?
But then, the denouement. Sunday. When the tomb is found empty, the faithful followers started to put 2 & 2 together, and all the odd moments with Jesus that didn’t seem to make too much sense at the time suddenly made a lot more sense… perfect sense, as all the strands of the storyline came into a beautifully interwoven focus revealing a wonderful tapestry of humanity. The Savior that was dead had risen from the dead, and was alive – IS alive and has bridged the gap between you and your Father. Hallelujah, He is risen.
For us who are still in the “Saturday” of struggling – as we pray and wait and try not to doubt, let us lift one another up with the encouragement that our denouement is coming. In the moment when God in His perfect timing answers our prayer, life will be clearer as we view it through the rear window, and it will then be easy to see the fingerprints of the Father bringing that which was dead in our hearts back to life, restoring what we believed to be lost, and making things right.
Brand Director, STAR 99.1