Sixteen years ago I attended my first Maundy Thursday service at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. One of the classes I was taking that semester was Worship (I know, sounds easy...it wasn't). When Maundy Thursday rolled around that year I was living 500 miles from my family and going through a difficult time where I felt very alone. Maybe that's why that service affected so deeply. But to this day I remember that service.
Maundy Thursday is the Thursday before Easter. It was the day Jesus ate his last Passover meal with his disciples. It would only be a matter of hours before He was betrayed, arrested, beaten and hung to die. In this particular service the auditorium was dark. The music was somber. When we left that day we left in silence. Remembering the darkness and silence that extended from Jesus' death until His resurrection.
Maybe that service made such an impression on me because I was going through my own time of darkness when it felt as though God was silent on many issues. Have you ever been there? When you pray and you believe that God has a plan for it all but the silence and darkness is deafening and terrifying?
Every year I try to imagine what those disciples felt. What did they think? They believed in Jesus. He made so many promises but now He was dead. How was this going to turn out right? For 3 days they had silence and fear as companions.
So for me Maundy Thursday is a time of reflection on my own trust in Jesus. A reminder that the Son rose. And a reminder that God can work things out in ways I could never expect.