Here is Pastor May’s latest devotion for you all.
The women arrived early that morning. The sun was not very high in the sky… probably just poking through the trees. They came to prepare the body of a loved one for a proper burial. If you’ve ever had a funeral of a close loved one, you know the same thoughts. The body had been closed up, lying in wait… somewhere… until everyone would arrive. The tasks of the day are not going to be pleasant. But, this particular morning, they find the body gone. And everything is more than a little off… the big stone… the guards. What was happening? On that kind of day, even with the fact that he told them what was going to happen, it is easy to understand their confusion. The man was dead.
We also can find it hard enough to continue to believe. Even if we’ve believed for quite a while. The memory fades, the enthusiasm wanes, the realities of everyday life take over, and the truth about Jesus seems less important. This is particularly the case when we find ourselves alone… or perhaps surrounded by people who don’t believe or understand (as the women did that Easter morning). The death and depression and melancholy of this world can pull the life right out of us.
And then we continue to look for the living among the dead. We are tempted, perhaps strongly, head into improper entertainment, dangerous substances, and unhealthy situations… anything that will take our mind off of things. We find ourselves hoping to find life there… hoping get things back to the way they were. But we do not find Jesus in those places. And he is the only one who can give us life.
But then, once again, he finds us. In the face of those who believed it was impossible to rise from the dead… he simply did it. In the face of the great divide, the uncrossable chasm between God and us… he simply crossed it. He forgives us, gives us new life, and leads us in that life by his Spirit. And he still comes to us in the Word where he promises we will find him.
Our hope is in the name of the Lord, Who made Heaven and Earth… in the Savior who pursued us to the ends of the earth… so that we will be joined with our God forever.
O gracious God, thank You for all that You have done to save me. Thank You for all that You do to keep me in faith. May my heart and mind remain in You… until the moment of the Savior’s return. Amen.