Good Friday – Empty

Ad Reinhardt, Abstract Painting no. 4, 1961, oil on linen, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc., 1969.47.71

42And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • The Light of the World was extinguished.
  • How to you experience the unbelief?
  • How do you embrace the emptiness?
  • Where has Love gone?
  • What does death have to teach you today?
  • Be filled with hope and hear the good news of forgiveness and reconciliation.
  • It is GOOD Friday.
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Friday, April 10, 2020, Good Friday (Year A)

Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Psalm 22:1-31
Hebrews 10:16-25
John 18:1-19:42

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings.  (c) 2020 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Rev. Dr. Lil Smith is a trained spiritual director, supervisor, and co-founder of Retreat House Spirituality Center in Richardson, TX.  Upon completion of her spiritual direction training, Lil began Praying the Lectionary in 2011 as a spiritual practice for her morning prayer time.  Instead of reading about someone else’s experience of God, it was important for her to create a prayer practice that would encourage felt sense experience of the Holy emerging from within.  It dawned on her others might enjoy the practice, as well.  So she began to share them on this site.

As you experience the practice of Praying the Lectionary, adopt a loving, caring, and compassionate stance.  If the end of your prayer and meditation time is not pointing to love and hope, there is more work to do.  Keep wrestling.  God is faithful to your journey.  Love and hope will emerge.  Be gentle with yourself and befriend any judgment that arises in you.

Good Friday – Entombed

JOHN 19:31-42

31Since it was the day of Preparation, the Jews did not want the bodies left on the cross during the sabbath, especially because that sabbath was a day of great solemnity. So they asked Pilate to have the legs of the crucified men broken and the bodies removed. 32Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who had been crucified with him. 33But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34Instead, one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once blood and water came out.35(He who saw this has testified so that you also may believe. His testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth.) 36These things occurred so that the scripture might be fulfilled, “None of his bones shall be broken.”37And again another passage of scripture says, “They will look on the one whom they have pierced.”

38After these things, Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, though a secret one because of his fear of the Jews, asked Pilate to let him take away the body of Jesus. Pilate gave him permission; so he came and removed his body. 39Nicodemus, who had at first come to Jesus by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, weighing about a hundred pounds. 40They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews. 41Now there was a garden in the place where he was crucified, and in the garden there was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. 42And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • After it’s all been said and done,  grace and mercy remains.
  • What tears do you shed for Jesus?
  • Imagine you are one of the few who come to claim his body from the cross.
  • How do you handle his flesh?
  • What smell do you encounter?
  • What do you hear?
  • Who is with you?
  • What cloth do you bring in which to wrap him?
  • Where do you place him?
  • What feelings are most heightened?
  • Sit at the tomb as long as you desire.
  • Grace and mercy remain.
  • Be cleansed and hear the good news of forgiveness and reconciliation.
  • It is GOOD Friday.
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Friday, April 10, 2020, Good Friday (Year A)

Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Psalm 22:1-31
Hebrews 10:16-25
John 18:1-19:42

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings.  (c) 2020 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Rev. Dr. Lil Smith is a trained spiritual director, supervisor, and co-founder of Retreat House Spirituality Center in Richardson, TX.  Upon completion of her spiritual direction training, Lil began Praying the Lectionary in 2011 as a spiritual practice for her morning prayer time.  Instead of reading about someone else’s experience of God, it was important for her to create a prayer practice that would encourage felt sense experience of the Holy emerging from within.  It dawned on her others might enjoy the practice, as well.  So she began to share them on this site.

As you experience the practice of Praying the Lectionary, adopt a loving, caring, and compassionate stance.  If the end of your prayer and meditation time is not pointing to love and hope, there is more work to do.  Keep wrestling.  God is faithful to your journey.  Love and hope will emerge.  Be gentle with yourself and befriend any judgment that arises in you.

Good Friday – Empty

Ad Reinhardt, Abstract Painting no. 4, 1961, oil on linen, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc., 1969.47.71

42And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • The Light of the World was extinguished.
  • How to you experience the unbelief?
  • How do you embrace the emptiness?
  • Where has Love gone?
  • What does death have to teach you today?
  • Be filled with hope and hear the good news of forgiveness and reconciliation.
  • It is GOOD Friday.
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Friday, April 19, 2019, Good Friday (Year C)

Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Psalm 22:1-31
Hebrews 10:16-25
John 18:1-19:42


If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings (c) 2019 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Good Friday – Entombed

JOHN 19:31-42

31Since it was the day of Preparation, the Jews did not want the bodies left on the cross during the sabbath, especially because that sabbath was a day of great solemnity. So they asked Pilate to have the legs of the crucified men broken and the bodies removed. 32Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who had been crucified with him. 33But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34Instead, one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once blood and water came out.35(He who saw this has testified so that you also may believe. His testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth.) 36These things occurred so that the scripture might be fulfilled, “None of his bones shall be broken.”37And again another passage of scripture says, “They will look on the one whom they have pierced.”

38After these things, Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, though a secret one because of his fear of the Jews, asked Pilate to let him take away the body of Jesus. Pilate gave him permission; so he came and removed his body. 39Nicodemus, who had at first come to Jesus by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, weighing about a hundred pounds. 40They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews. 41Now there was a garden in the place where he was crucified, and in the garden there was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. 42And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying attention to the deep breath.
  • After it’s all been said and done,  grace and mercy remains.
  • What tears do you shed for Jesus?
  • Imagine you are one of the few who come to claim his body from the cross.
  • How do you handle his flesh?
  • What smell do you encounter?
  • What do you hear?
  • Who is with you?
  • What cloth do you bring in which to wrap him?
  • Where do you place him?
  • What feelings are most heightened?
  • Sit at the tomb as long as you desire.
  • Grace and mercy remain.
  • Be cleansed and hear the good news of forgiveness and reconciliation.
  • It is GOOD Friday.
  • Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Friday, April 19, 2019, Good Friday (Year C)

Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Psalm 22:1-31
Hebrews 10:16-25
John 18:1-19:42


If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings (c) 2019 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD