“The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples; ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you to Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.” So the women ran away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples.” Matthew 27:5-8
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
If you have been listening to my messages on Facebook or YouTube you would know that I have been referring to this time we are living in as a roller coaster ride. I began using this image because it fits, not only the unusual time we are living in now, but the whole season of Lent as we are focused on the road Jesus was on to Jerusalem.
This week alone our roller coaster ride is taking us up a hill as Jesus enters into Jerusalem. He is lauded as King! The people cry out the words, “Hosanna, to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” We hit the top of the hill, so we think, as people are singing and proclaiming Jesus as King! Yet, through out the week Jesus isn’t making friends as he tells parable after parable challenging the religious leadership. Then we will hit Thursday as Judas brings the guards to meet Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. Jesus is betrayed with a kiss and taken into custody. Soon after his arrest he is beaten, mocked and hung on a cross. We now are at the lowest point (so we think)….and we wait….and we wait….and we wait!
The women who go to the tomb are distraught and sad on their way to the tomb. Hope has been taken away………….until………they hear the words, “He has risen from the dead.” Matthew writes, “They run away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy…” As they were hurrying on their way Jesus met them, told them NOT to be afraid and sent them to tell the disciples where to meet him.
As we continue to walk through this spider web of COVID 19, Stay in home rulings, worrying about whether or not you or someone you love has been infected and learning new ways to be during this time, I pray you understand the power of the Lenten journey. There are highs and lows on the road, but in Jesus the end is filled with HOPE and LIFE!
HOPE and LIFE are the words we, as the people of God, need to have at the forefront of our hearts and minds during Lent…this pandemic…this Easter…and beyond. When we retell the Holy Week/Easter account we are reminded that there is sorrow before great JOY. We hear of Jesus’ suffering and death, which is followed by a time of waiting and fear but then there is the magnificent and glorious RESURRECTION!
Where are you in your heart and mind right now? Are you on the tenuous downhill journey in life? Are you sitting, waiting in fear of what you will hear next? Are you already living in the moment of HOPE, LIFE and RESURRECTION?
Where ever you are on your journey I pray you are STAYING HOME! Where ever you are on your journey I pray you are tuning in to our Facebook and/or YouTube posts (Worship with us, yes, even online.)! Where ever you are on your journey, remember we want to be here for you! Where ever you are on your journey, remember, you are NOT ALONE Jesus is right there beside you.