Easter Sunday

by admin on April 6, 2015

Reflections for 5 April 2015
John 20:1-18

[[prayer for inspiration]] Pour through me the gift of preaching….didn’t come here to listen to human voice, opinion, speculation…but your living voice in your living word. Work miracle of the Holy Spirit so that everyone will hear message tailor made for them.

We know this story by heart. That’s the problem. While the empty tomb is recorded on each of the gospels, the details vary in every one of them. This, of course, leads to skepticism, doubt, dismissal. Im not here to prove the historical veracity of the resurrection but I will pose this question———

How do you make the Bible come alive? How do you allow this story that could transform your life come to life?

Three spiritual principles. Alive today as they were on the first Easter. If you give yourself to these principles you will be transformed just like we heard the lives of Mary Magdalene, John…even Peter were changed. I doubt if the present state of social media will cover these.

1. Jesus begins where we are and moves us to where he is.
Notice: Mary Magdalene weeping, fully expecting Jesus is be dead. Discovery only heightens grief—frame of reference. Her grip on reality = they have taken the lord and I don’t know where…..Jesus is AWOL.

Buddy: what’s with Jesus on loose? Why can’t you be normal? Normal? Jesus is dead and beyond stone. Why? To keep him inside. But it’s busted open and he is gone…gone forward into life, gone forward to God, gone forward on the loose. Question to ask isn’t “how?” but “now what?”

Normal people see Easter as the beginning of spring, flowers fertilizer, and forsythia. Jesus begins with us there…

Christianity is not program to correct your wrongs; eliminate your negatives. It’s about Jesus. Following him, being with him, being touched by him to accept yourself, life and to discover deeper, richer meaning.

Jesus changes our entire frame of reference

2. Easter is not an individual experience…you need to be in community to get it.

Left to their own devices Mary Magdalene, John and Peter got only part of the picture. Mary Magdalene discovers the risen Jesus but assumes she’s dealing with normal reality. The groundskeeper.

Brief conversation: Don’t hold onto me. Go to my brothers and tell them: I ascend to my Father and your Father…my God and your God.

Good Friday and Mel Gibson’s “Passion”. Watch alone and go home. Impossible to understand, get arms around, figure it out without community of faith to get whole picture. This is a major problem with how most people think of Christianity.

Christianity is not Jesus and me. Unique message of Christianity is a religious movement: community of Compassion, Forgiveness, Generosity, Hope, Humility.

The self is not a very good site for meaning. Recall my pervading mantra: “I ain’t much…..” The larger the thing you can credibly attach yourself to, the more meaning you get out of life…and that means the better you deal with life. Even secular psychologists say that real meaning is found in a vision of something beyond yourself.

3. What about us in all this? What are our options?

Notice three responses: Mary Magdalene —tragedy; Peter—uncertainty; John—faith.

Trust. Not leap out window but acceptance and trust of body of knowledge as true as 2×2=4. Boyd of knowledge Jesus is alive. I can join his life. I can receive a new way of dealing with my complex existence. There is a vision for the world that centers around Kingdom values—Faith, Hope, Love. There is meaning and purpose in life. We are headed to some place prepared since the beginning of creation. Do you see how expansive this is—instead of how confining most takes on Christianity end up being?

Now I got a problem. Choice. Jesus invites us to reframe reality. De Chardin: we are spiritual beings having a physical experience. No wonder our hearts are restless till they find their rest in Thee.

Martin Seligman. “Eudaemonia: the Good Life” Happiness—pursuit of meaning = attachment to something bigger than you are.

This essay speaks of his journey to this. Revelation in his garden. 5 year old daughter, Nicky. He doesn’t relate well with kids. He’s weeding, she’s throwing dirt. Yelling…….

Nicky: Daddy, I want to talk with you.
Marty: Yeh……
Nicky: Remember my 5th birthday? (2 weeks ago) I was a whiner? That I whined every day?
Marty: Yeh….
Nicky: On my 5th birthday I decided I wasn’t going to whine anymore. And it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. And if I can stop whining, you can stop being a grouch.

Rocked by a 5 year old!!

Marty: I resolved then and there to change. Not just being a grouch, but a fundamental shift of world view, my thinking, my interacting with others and the world.

There is a cure for all the world’s ills and hurts. And it’s loose here right now. It’s the good news that our deaths are not final and that our failure are not fatal.

It’s the good news of a future which God has planned all along for us in undying love. A future very much alive and present right now.

Now before I sign off, one more worthy item. Buddy at Biggby’s: Trouble with you preachers is that you never make Jesus relate to my world……

What makes you think Jesus wants to relate to your world? Jesus doesn’t want to relate to your world…he wants to rock your world.

And rock he does ever since that other rock back in a Jerusalem garden got moved.

Yes, we are reporting live from Nova where it’s been confirmed that JESUS CHRIST is risen from the dead and on the loose. Now go spread the word.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: