No sermons for me to deliver, no special music to be sung at church services, no big family dinner… no hiding that I feel blue about this. Rising like the dawn however is the joyful hope brought on by keeping the mind stayed on the one thing no person, disease, affliction or circumstance can take from us. HE IS RISEN…HE HAS RISEN INDEED!
Why is that significant?
Paul says this: “…For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable. But now Christ *is* risen from the dead…” (1st Corinthians 15:16-20 NKJV – emphasis mine).
Peter says this: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls“. (1st Peter 1:3-9 NKJV)
Again, this is what no person, disease, affliction or circumstance can take from us. So if your holiday celebration feels diminished this year remember that the point and pinnacle of the celebration for believers is still very much intact – perhaps even more visible then its ever been. Honestly I’m not stuck on melancholy – neither should you be. I’m feeling that the stripping away of the social and traditional aspects of Easter is a good thing for some of us. I pray that it will be the cause of our seeing the cross and it’s message more clearly this year.
Added Treat: Listen to “Every Drop of Blood” by George Hillman