Sunday, March 23, 2008
He is RISEN!!!!
Since becoming a Christian at age 30, Easter has been my absolute favorite holiday (holyday). Most folks prefer Christmas and see it as the time that God delivered His promise to all people. And of course, that's true. Sort of...
For me, Easter is the absolute, total and perfected fulfillment of God's promise--not only that He would send His only Son ("For God so loved the world..."), which He did at His Christmas birth, but that this Divine God-Man, Jesus, lived a perfect life of submission, including a tortuous death on a cross, was dead for three days and was resurrected, showed Himself to others and ascended in Heaven among many witnesses, making the way for us to follow Him into eternal life
Now, that! is a promise fulfilled.
Every Easter (until my kids just couldn't stand it anymore--and out of respect for their feelings), I used to bound up the steps of the building where we held our Easter service (the town civic center), and reaching the top step, would turn, arms raised to Heaven, head thrown back and yelling triumphantly, "HE. IS. RISEN!!!!!!!"
Didn't care who saw me (we routinely had over a thousand attendees for our Easter celebration), certainly didn't care who heard me (the louder the better, I felt). I only knew that I must proclaim the miraculous triumph of Easter; God over Satan, life over death, good over evil, eternal salvation and redemption from sin-- and for me, that meant yelling the truth of resurrection.
He. Is. Risen.
Today, I am tired. We arrived home at 2:00 AM after a grueling day traveling home from Spring Break '08 (which was awesome, BTW--visit the other blog for more coverage on that story). Still being jazzed on energy drinks (since I never consume caffeine, they *really* affect me), I unloaded the car and was the last man standing, until by 3:30 AM, I was finally unwound.
So here I am, a few hours later, awakened by His Spirit in time to celebrate Easter in my favorite place, with people I love. And out of respect for my children's feelings, I will not run excitedly and yell triumphantly. Sigh.
But I will proclaim the miracle of His life, His truth, His salvation, His divinity, His resurrection, His Second Coming, until I cease to live on this earth.
I know what He has done for me. I know that I was unable to do for me, what He did for me, in an instant, alone, on my couch. I was changed in an instant.
I have never been the same since.
Ask those who knew me then.
I have used this brief explanation (the long story short version of my conversion); I know what it is like to despair without Jesus and I have known what it is like to despair *with* Jesus. And it is not the same at all. Not even close.
I have learned how to tell others about Christ, using scripture and Biblical reasoning. For me, I find my personal story of my personal transformation, my personal first meeting with our very Personal Savior to be the best evidence I can give for my faith.
So, I will proclaim LOUDLY on my blog (out of respect for my children's feelings) and in my heart and *quietly* to those I meet along the way today, that, "HE IS RISEN!!!!!!"
He is risen, indeed.
It is finished.
Even so, come quickly Lord!
He Is Risen by Greg Olsen depicts the following Bible story:
As she wept outside His tomb, Mary Magdalene was the first person to whom the resurrected Christ appeared. Radiant in the early morning light, His hands and feet scarred from the nails, He stoops to comfort His friend:
"On that first Easter morning, the Risen Lord, Himself, reassured a sad and questioning Mary Magdalene that He is real and that, yes, He lives!"
-- Greg Olsen