It’s Easter weekend and my thoughts are, of course, on the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. After the crucifixion, what were His disciples and followers thinking? Were their hearts shattered, their minds confused? Did Mary remember the angel Gabriel’s announcement years before or did she fold in her grief, not wanting her firstborn Son to be dead? How did she watch as He breathed His last breath? How did she even get a breath herself?
Those who knew and loved Jesus were in deep grief and in their confusion, they scattered and the disciples gathered together. They had heard the Words of the Savior but they had to be reeling from the events of that Friday. After living three years with Him, seeing Him calm the sea, deliver people from demons, heal the sick, and giving sight to the blind, what were they to do? Did they go back to their former lives, the prior three years but a memory? The day between Friday and Sunday was frightening and daunting. They didn’t fully understand what Sunday would mean.
When someone dies, the birth date and the death date are separated by a dash, but the dash between those two dates is significant. The dash signifies a lifetime of good and bad deeds, behaviors, accomplishments and failures. The dash is important because in those years we have opportunities to matter on this earth. There is a grave marker in a cemetery not far away that rests above a plot of ground. My husband is buried beneath that marker and his dash speaks of 72 years of living on this earth. The dash between the two would fill books. His life counted for Christ, good days and bad days, failures and restoration, of loving and caring. His dash indeed spoke volumes.
My side of the marker has only my birthdate followed by a dash. When the second date will be filled in is known only by the Father. I wonder if that dash will represent a life of purpose, of Godliness, of following hard after Jesus? Will my life have made a difference in this world? Oh, I pray so. There have been so many failures, a lot of rebellion, of mistakes and sin, but there has been great Grace, the mercy of God. It would be a waste if our dashes are reflective of anything else but an earthly journey with God.
Jesus didn’t have two dates with a dash in the middle. He always was and always will be. The three years He ministered on earth were monumental. He did only what His Father said. He fulfilled the purpose for which He was sent, to die for the sins of the world, offering us salvation, and to rise from the dead on the third day, giving us victory. He is alive today, seated at the right hand of God. It is finished.
The incomprehensible truth is that we, too, can live in the Presence of God daily. We can know eternal life when we accept Jesus by faith. He IS eternal life. No matter what the dash represents in our lives so far, there is forgiveness and life for the asking. That’s why He came. This is Easter. This is glorious!
Christ has risen, He has risen indeed!