Easter as well as springtime brings new hope. Here in Minnesota, spring marks the end of winter and the rebirth of green and colorful plants and flowers. Buried all winter under a heavy blanket of snow and frost, tiny sprouts bravely immerge. I have seen this repeat year after year my whole life, yet I am always amazed that God can bring dead looking things back to life every spring. People drive on frozen lakes in January and swim in the same lakes in June!! Isn’t God amazing!!
Just as God melts the frozen lakes and brings plants back to life in the spring, He raised his Son from the grave on Easter Sunday. I pray that this truth will grab your heart and get your full attention this Easter season. Spend some time in quiet reflection reading in God’s Word the full account of the Easter message. I recommend reading the Easter message in all four gospels -- Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John starting with Palm Sunday. In preparation for Easter, a specific passage to read is Matthew, Chapters 21-28.
The Good Friday portion of the Easter story is difficult to read and fully comprehend, but it is necessary in order to grasp the extent of God’s love for us and the extent of His sacrifice to make salvation possible. Often people come to counseling in great pain and thinking that no one could possibly understand the extent of their suffering. I can assure you that God does understand. Jesus suffered excruciating physical, emotional, and spiritual pain beyond human comprehension. His greatest suffering, however, was being separated by our sin from His Father God. He, who suffered so much, is able to sympathize with our suffering.
The dark agony of Good Friday yields to the glorious joy of Easter Sunday. When the women went to the tomb before the break of day on the third day following the crucifixion of Jesus, they found that the immense stone in front of the tomb entrance had been rolled away and the tomb was empty. The tomb had been sealed with the seal of the Roman Empire on the stone; and archeologists speculate that, depending on the type of stone used, it could have weighted between 1 and 2 tons. Because it was cork-shaped, it would have been far easier to roll into place than to remove from the entrance of the tomb. Venturing inside the tomb, the women heard the miraculous message of the angel. “He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. Go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead. . . “ Mathew 28:6-7
At Hopewell Counseling we are all about hope. Please fully receive the message of Easter afresh this year. Receive Jesus as the risen Savior of your life. When you are overwhelmed with darkness and grief, turn your eyes toward the empty tomb and trust the risen Lord Jesus.
Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes.
He arose a Victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever with His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose! Hallelujah, Christ arose!
Wishing you a joyous and blessed Easter,