If you go shopping this weekend, you’d be hard pressed to find any remnants of Easter. Oh, maybe a few picked-over decorations or some leftover candy in a bargain bin somewhere, but summer’s coming and we have to make way for lawn mowers and grills and lounge chairs and flags.
However, I’d guess if you go to church this weekend, you won’t have it any easier. Easter is over and we, for the most part, are over it.
It wasn’t that way in the beginning, though. If you read the first few chapters in the book of Acts, you’ll find that the Resurrection was the central focus of the believers’ faith. It changed everything for them. Approaching God was no longer about rituals and routines. It was a relationship, vibrant and bold, full of life and joy and purpose. Every illusion of the power that death or hardship had over them was shattered, replaced by the irrepressible reality that Jesus was alive and they, too, would live forever. Their lifestyle was culture-changing. Their faith was contagious. Their devotion was unwavering.
I, on the other hand, tend to live by my to-do list, navigating from one crisis to the next. I tend to view the Resurrection as an event rather than a reality. I’m more likely to water it down than talk it up. I focus more on what people will think of me than what Jesus did for me. I rely more on ‘I hope so’, than on the power of the Holy Spirit. I’m much more concerned about the years I have on this earth than the eternity someone else will have apart from God.
Instead, I need to adopt the lifestyle and mindset of the first century. Paul sums it up in Galatians 2:20. “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Dead to self. Alive to Christ.
Finally, I need to remember no matter what happens today, tomorrow or next week, the Resurrection proves that it is God who has the last word.
He is risen. He is risen indeed!