Living the Resurrection Life1
Do you get that day-after-Christmas feeling? The kind of let-down that follows all the hype of the past few weeks? The sort-of now ugly empty space under the tree bothering you, and the feeling that there isn’t anything much special to look forward to today, so let’s get back to normalcy ASAP? Of course, that feeling doesn’t have to happen-- the celebration of the incarnation should go on.
And so should the celebration of the resurrection continue after the eggs and candy have disappeared and the church decorations have come down and the glorious high of the Easter Sunday worship service has faded in the ordinary routines of life.
My Easter Bible reading (from She Reads Truth) has continued focusing these past two weeks on our Great Savior and on our Great Hope. And the Holy Spirit has shown me this truth: the resurrection means I live differently TODAY in the days and weeks after Easter in very practical ways.
The resurrection means that I will have a resurrection body! Because this is true, I do not have to give in to the whims and appetites of this earthly one. I do not have to have one more piece of cake, one more half hour of sleep, or one more afternoon of rainy day reading on the couch. This body is not the one that matters. Flesh and blood will not inherit the kingdom of God, nor will corruption inherit incorruption. (1 Corinthians 15:50-53)
The resurrection means that I have been raised with Christ! Because this is true, the things I am tempted to seek, i.e., those that lead to my own bodily and mental ease, are not to be the pursuit of my life. I am instead, to seek the things which are above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God, and to set my mind in that place because when Christ, who is my life appears, then I also will appear with him in glory. Therefore, I put to death what belongs to my earthy nature and instead put on humility, compassion, gentleness and patience, forgiveness and love. I fill my heart with the word of God and my mouth with singing and wisdom and thankfulness. (Colossian 3:1-17)
The resurrection means that God has given me the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ! Both the sting of death and the power of sin are gone! Because this is true, I can and should be going beyond the expected measure in toiling, laboring, working hard for the kingdom of God; such effort is not in vain in the Lord! (1 Corinthians 15:56-58)
There is a better place prepared for me. (John 14:2-3 and Hebrews 11:16) There is a future reward and eternal Sabbath rest awaiting!
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever. (Revelation 22:1-5)