Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Unexpected Gift of Easter

“On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’ After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. Again Jesus said, ‘Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.’ And with that he breathed on them and said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.’" – John 20:19-23  

“While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven. Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.” – Luke 24: 51-52 

Sometimes Jesus' gifts and blessings to us come in mysterious ways: through pain and trouble, through grief and fear. These times parallel the feelings that the disciples felt on Good Friday as they watched their Lord die on a cross for crimes He didn't commit. At such times, we can know His goodness only through our trust in Him. A trust that He layed the foundation for years ago, first on the cross at Calvary, through His suffering for our sins, and then through His promised resurrection and the gift of a Helper to live within us always, to give us the power that we can only find through Him. Understanding of our circumstances will fail us, but trust will keep us close to Him.

Jesus gives us the gift of His peace, a gift of such immense proportions that we cannot fathom its depth or breadth. This peace surpasses all worldly explanation, but when we give ourselves to Him, fully, He does not fail us. When Jesus appeared to His disciples after the resurrection, it was Peace that He communicated first of all. He knew this was their deepest need: to calm their fears and clear their minds and anxious thoughts. Some things never change.

He designed us to dwell in Peace all day, every day. Draw near to Him; receive His Peace. And praise Him for He is risen indeed!
May the peace of Easter be with you today and always.

~with help from "Jesus Calling" by Sarah Young

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