This past weekend, I attended an amazing retreat at my church. One of my absolute favorite things about retreats is the amount of bliss and peacefulness and sheer joy you can experience, knowing that in a few hours you can worship your heart out with a bunch of other kids or sit and listen to an awesome sermon. I really wish every weekend could be like the weekend I had. I’ve learned a lot, but it can all come back to the word Tetelestai.
Tetelestai is a Greek word (which can be very hard to type/say) that translates to “it is finished”. We all know that God sent His son down to die for our sins and Jesus did just that. But I have learned that analyzing it deeper, Jesus truly was able to say the word tetelestai and mean it. Jesus is the only human being to walk the earth who finished everything He needed to. He had no unfinished business whatsoever.
They put a sponge soaked in wine on a sprig of hyssop and put it up to his mouth.
When Jesus had received the wine, he said, “It is finished;” and he bowed his head and handed over the spirit.
When Jesus died on the cross for our sins, He was able to say “tetelestai” and truly mean it. What that means for us today is that our grief, regret, pain, guilts, etc. are finished as well. These things associated with our sins keep us trapped in a personal prison cell. The more we worry about these sins from the past (or present), the more filled the prison cell seems. But the awesome thing about when we feel trapped is knowing that God does not hold these things over your head! Our Lord gives us His wonderful grace and makes us good again.
We were made in God’s likeness and we were meant to be faithful to Him. Sometimes, we stray off course. We feel out of touch with the Lord or too distant. God calls us back to Him, making us good again. The Holy Spirit was meant to dwell within our hearts. The Lord isn’t meant to be a distant figure that we never reach. When we walk closely with the Lord, we can become a dwelling place of God. I love that phrase. I want the spirit of God to dwell within me and lead my actions, words, etc.
If Christ is within our hearts, this leads to hope for the world. When God guides our steps, we can become a bright light for the world. This is something I strive to do daily. I want to become a light in people’s lives and help them see God through me. We are placed in so many situations and groups, all of which are places we can be that shining ray of hope. We can show God to others by loving on them and serving them.
The whole point of becoming a ray of hope and light in people’s lives is to point them to the Lord. Remember that our bodies, our possessions, our family members, our worlds aren’t ours. Everything belongs to God and can be used to glorify Him if we just listen. We can be a tool for His kingdom.
All of this I learned over the course of one weekend and there are some pretty deep realizations within this. I (hope and) believe everything I’ve learned flows together and all of the above end with this: because Jesus’s life came to an end, ours can begin. We can live free, beautiful, forgiven lives. All because it is finished.