Friday, April 9, 2010

reflecting on Easter

I've been thinking about this blog post since last weekend - Easter weekend - but that weekend was so busy for me that it's really taken me this long to get any clarity on what I wanted to write. And I'm still not sure this has a point other than to just record my somewhat disjointed thoughts.

Good Friday . . .
Why exactly do we call it good?
I mean, sure, now with the benefit of looking back at history we can see that it was good in the end, but the events that happened that day were hardly what we would normally call good. And they must have seemed like the end of the world to Jesus' disciples and other followers.
Yet, we call it Good Friday.

Saturday . . .
Can you even imagine what it must have been like on this Sabbath for Jesus disciples and followers?
The Sabbath . . . by Jewish Law they were not allowed to do any work on this day, so Jesus lay in the tomb, but no one brought spices or anything to the tomb. Just going through the motions of the day. Nothing feeling quite right.
Possibly the disciples were feeling this way as they went through the day.

Easter Sunday . . .
Resurrection Day!
But Jesus' disciples and other followers had no idea what this day would hold when they woke up.
The women go to visit the tomb and bring burial spices . . . but they find an empty tomb. They run to tell the disciples who don't believe them and have to check it out for themselves.
Is it possible?
Did He really rise from the dead?
Is He really alive again?

Jesus appears to His disciples and followers . . .
They had seen Him die and they knew He had been placed in tomb . . . yet He was alive and in their midst?!
How is that possible?
Yet, it fulfills the prophecies of old and the statements Jesus made about Himself.
Jesus said that He would rise again in three days.

Ordinary, un-schooled men and women . . . 
turn their world upside-down with their proclamations of Jesus' victory over sin and death on the cross.
Even in the face of persecution they do not be quiet.
Death cannot shut their mouths.
Punishment and imprisonment cannot stop the spread.

What an amazing thing to celebrate and remember . . .
Jesus died on the cross for my sins,
                                    for your sins,
                                    for the sins of the world
                                                      -those who had aleady lived and died,
                                                       those who were living then,
                                                       and those who would live in all eternity.
How incredible the truth . . .
that still turns our world upside-down.

How precious the love for us - for you, for me, for all -
that led our Lord to make the greatest sacrifice of all,
to reconcile us to Him and restore a broken relationship.

I read this earlier this week and thought it was a fresh way to look at the story of Easter, and really it is what got me thinking about some of what I wrote.

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