Monday, April 25, 2011

Personal Reflections on the Resurrection

Easter is now officially over. You may have attended an Easter worship service that included special music and a meaningful sermon, followed by a nice lunch. Maybe you attended special events during the past week, including a passion play or an Easter egg hunt. Perhaps you enjoyed family traditions with your children, such as coloring eggs or baking cookies. But now it is all over. Or is it? How much of a difference does Christ’s resurrection really make in our daily lives? Does it determine our purpose throughout the entire year or do we forget to contemplate its significance after the Easter holiday is over?

Sometimes it is easy to become desensitized to the story of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection because we have heard it so many times before. Once a year we reflect on these events and then we push them into the background of our thoughts. We do not allow the truth of Christ’s resurrection to infiltrate every area of our lives, including our struggles, trials, and triumphs both great and small. But that is not how Christ wants us to live! It would be different if we worshiped mere idols that had no power, but that is not the case for us at all. Our Lord is RISEN and thus He is ALIVE! Accordingly, Jesus is personal, loving, all-knowing, and all-powerful. He is more than enough for meeting our every need and fulfilling all of His promises to us. In reality, the resurrection should make an incredible difference to us every moment of our lives. Our thoughts, words, and actions should be a continual reflection of His life, love, and mercy in us.

Has anyone ever told you not to “sweat the small stuff”? Mothers are often notorious for sweating the small stuff. In order to avoid this, it is essential for us to develop a better grasp of who exactly it is that we serve. Jesus is the ruler of everything and is quite capable of handling all that comes our way, including the small stuff, the massive stuff, and all of the in-between stuff too. Giving all of our concerns to God becomes less difficult when we remember to meditate on all that He has done for us. His promises are available to us only because he is alive today. Because He lives, He knows us and loves us. Because He lives, we can know and love Him. Because He lives, He offers us grace and mercy that could never be earned. Because He lives, we have hope for the future. Because He lives, our place in eternity with Him is secure. Because He lives, we are able to love one another, including our families, our friends, and even those who detest us. Because He lives, we will experience peace that passes all understanding. Because He lives, His perfect love will cast away all of our fears. Because He lives, our sins are forgiven as far as the east is from the west. Because He lives, His power is made perfect in our weakness. Because He lives, we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. Because He lives, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE! So often I forget to live as though I believe those promises, but God’s Word is truth and His promises are applicable to our lives every single day!

 As women, we often feel overburdened by the unrealistic expectations of others. Please remember that we are not obligated to please anyone other than God. When we are serving Jesus and following His lead, our burdens are lighter and it becomes much easier to keep our priorities in line. We must let go of our anxiety regarding what others think of us or expect from us. God will always gives us the strength to do the things He has called us to do. Although we often stumble, He always loves us, always forgives us, and He will always sustain us. God already knows our insecurities and weaknesses; He has the power to work in our lives in spite of them. He is helping us to persevere and is continually covering us with His grace, even when we are unaware of it. The things we do to please or impress others lose their importance when we rest in God’s care, trust Him to supply our every need, and recognize that the most imperative battle of all has already been won!

As we begin our week, let’s be encouraged because we serve a risen Lord! Do not lose sight of the big picture. Allow it to define your purpose and give you a fresh perspective every day. It will make all of the difference in the world. Christ lives! Because He lives, He offers us new life and He even walks beside us through every step of the journey. Let us be thankful today and every day for all that Jesus has done for us!