When Jesus had tasted it, he said, “It is finished!” Then he bowed his head and released his spirit (John 19:30).

During Lent, I have been challenged to focus on the Cross. I don't think about the Cross often. It is not nice to think about torture.

So although I have been a Christian for my entire life, I have been meditating on the finished work of the Cross. Why? Because I haven't got it. And I need to get it.

Jesus has finished. 

Under the old covenant, the priest stands and ministers before the altar day after day, offering the same sacrifices again and again, which can never take away sins. But our High Priest offered himself to God as a single sacrifice for sins, good for all time. Then he sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand. There he waits until his enemies are humbled and made a footstool under his feet. For by that one offering he forever made perfect those who are being made holy (Hebrews 10:11-14).

As Jesus hung on the Cross, he cried, "It is finished." Sin has been paid for. He was whipped for my healing. It is done. Jesus will not come again to die on the Cross. He did it once and for all.

And with that offering I have forever been made perfect. I am perfect now. I will be perfect tomorrow. When my body is sick, I am perfect, because it is finished. Just let the enormity of those verses sink in.

Finished for you and me.

Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

The Cross was a huge price, and he paid it for me. It is personal. Yes, Jesus died for the world. But he also died for me.

Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for the child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands. Always in my mind is a picture of Jerusalem’s walls in ruins (Isaiah 49:15-16).

Identity fraud has taken on a whole new meaning, and become a whole lot more real since the invention of the internet. However, when I say your name has been hacked I am talking about something entirely different. I am talking about God’s love for his children.

Isaiah prophesied in chapter 49 that our names are engraved on the palms of God’s hands. Engraved is too nice a word compared to the meaning of the original Hebrew. A better translation would be that our names have been hacked with a nail and chisel, into the hands of God.

When you then think about the way Messiah was crucified, the meaning is even greater. As Jesus’ hands were nailed to the Cross, your name was being written. God will never forget you, your name was hacked into his palm on the Cross. God turned away and forgot about his Son, yet will never forget us because of it. The nails had to go through Jesus hands because your name had to be written in them.

When you see Jesus face to face, you will see the place where nails pierced his hands. And in his hands, you will see your name. He loves you and will never forget you.

We have finished.

Because he has finished, we have finished.

For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ (Romans 5:17).

It is not about achieving, it is about receiving. We are driven to do, but it is done. Once and for all, he has made us perfect. Perfect. Holy.  

So what happens when I feel overwhelmed?
Think of the Cross. Was Jesus overwhelmed? Yes. It is finished.

How about when I feel angry?
Think of the Cross. Was anger exhausted? Yes. It is finished.

When I feel frustrated?
Was the Cross frustrating? You bet! It is finished.

When sickness comes?
Was sickness finished at the Cross? Absolutely! It is finished.

You crazy Galatians! Did someone put a hex on you? Have you taken leave of your senses? Something crazy has happened, for it’s obvious that you no longer have the crucified Jesus in clear focus in your lives (Galatians 3:1).

Why have I needed a reminder of the finished work of the Cross? Because when I forget that it is finished, life gets crazy. I refuse to accept a crazy, hard, sick, and stressful life. It really is finished.

Sarah Coleman is an Australian author and communicator. Her books include Single Christian Female and Make Yourself Amazing. She is passionate about the Kingdom of God. She also loves being a wife and mother to two boys. To read more of Sarah's thoughts go to sarahcoleman.com.au.

Publication date: April 8, 2014