Minister’s Message – “Hope is still here!”
By Rev. Robert W. Warren, Bowling Green Church of the Nazarene
What an awesome season for the Christian that we have just come through!
The beautiful colors that are associated with Easter, family dinners and chocolate, chocolate, chocolate. My motto is, you can never have too much chocolate. I like chocolate brownies with chocolate chips with chocolate ice cream and chocolate syrup! I have been known to eat a chocolate Easter bunny or two on my time, ears first of course.
But as great as that is, that is not the best part of Easter. The best thing about Easter is the truth that it highlights. The truth that a Savior died in our place so we could have the opportunity to be saved from our sins, but the grave could not hold Him. Jesus not only defeated sin but also death, hell and the grave when He arose from the tomb. Death does not win, it does not get the final word, it is not the end of the story. Eternal life is not some empty promise, Jesus was resurrected to show us that the resurrection is real.
Christians began worshipping on Sunday, making it their Sabbath, calling it the Lord’s day, because it was on the first day of the week (our Sunday) that Christ arose. So each Sunday morning is like a fresh resurrection morn. And Jesus is worthy of all of our honor and reverence and praise!
I have especially been talking about Easter as a time of hope. The enemies of Jesus thought they had gotten rid of Him, but the grave couldn’t hold Him. Satan thought death had won, but death’s power wasn’t strong enough. Haters thought they were getting things their way, but love won out. Whatever you are facing in your life, hope is here if Jesus is here. And Jesus is here! He gave Himself on the cross to win victory for us, and He came up out of the tomb to offer it to us personally. He is present, offering you salvation, offering you His love and peace and joy.
In Him is the promise of a better day and a better way, that love is stronger than hate and life is stronger than death, that the dark night of the soul can give way brilliant light of His presence. So we the resurrection has a lot for us in the here and now. But someday we all have our own appointment with death. How wonderful to know that if our faith is in Christ it will just be the doorway to life eternal with Him!
And now Easter has come and gone for another year. Time to start thinking about how to burn off those extra fat cells I put on because of all that chocolate. We can kind of experience a letdown after all the hoopla you know. But may this serve as a reminder that Easter is not merely a date on the calendar but an ever present reality to those who embrace it by faith! Each sunrise is a new resurrection day, and each Lord’s Day an opportunity to refresh the promise all over again as a community of faith as we worship the ever present risen Savior.
May this be a gentle reminder that the hope we celebrated last Easter Sunday, that hope is still here!