Why do you look for the living among the dead? That was the question that the 2 angels asked the women who came to the tomb looking for Jesus. The angels told them that Jesus was not there, but he had risen. The women were looking in the wrong place. This is still a relevant question to ask ourselves 2000 years later. Our souls search for life but we look in all the wrong and empty places. Life cannot be found in the tombs of this world. We find life when we find the risen Jesus. This Easter, let us end our search in the dead end places. Let our souls rise up to meet Him and let us continue to receive the abundant life that He freely gives.
None of us would doubt for a moment the promise that spring is coming. We have every faith that the sun will shine warmer and the flowers will burst forth again into glorious blossoms. If we are blessed to live until 80 years of age, we will have witnessed 80 springs and have believed 80 times that spring is coming. It is easy to believe in spring. How much more then should we believe the promises of God who proves himself faithful to us not 80 times but every day of our lives. Each morning, as surely as the sun rises, his grace and mercy is showered down upon us with the precious gifts of life and love. God’s promises never fail. We experience them every day and they are uncountable. If we can put our faith in spring, let us put our faith in the One who made spring and whose promises are far greater than the promise of spring.
Just like the frozen, snow-covered ground of winter, the soil of our hearts can become winterized and hardened with the pain and sickness of unforgiveness. Even when our hearts are warm and alive, we may still be protecting these hidden frozen enclaves. This is the season of melting snow, fading frost, and dripping icicles – all are pictures in creation that call out to us to turn the face of our hearts into the warming wind. Time, humility and the amazing grace of God can soften our inner ice and warm us to embrace healing and reconciliation with our loved ones. Be open to what God could be saying to you through creation this spring. This could be your season for a soul spring thaw.
It takes work, courage and endurance to live out our faith and walk the narrow road to higher ground. There is no easy way. It is a “long obedience in the same direction” that chooses to keep our eyes on the Master, our feet on the path and our hands on the plow. The path of life leads to life. We do not walk alone when we walk with Him.
In order to find the path for our lives we need to get low enough to find the feet of the Master.
We set ourselves up for failure when we measure success only by the outcome that we hope to achieve. While some outcomes may seem predictable, they are ultimately in the hand of the Lord. But what we can do is measure success by the process and journey we take towards that outcome.
Instead of asking the questions like: Did I get the response I was looking for? Was there increase? Did that situation get resolved the way I want it to?
We should ask: Was I faithful and obedient to what the Lord called me to do? Did I do it and follow through with consistent godly integrity? Did I sense the holy presence of the Lord in that situation? Perhaps it is time for us to use a different measuring stick to determine if we did a “good job”.
“How long will it last?” and “Will I make it through?” are two natural questions to ask ourselves when we are in the storm. A deeper question to ask is, “Am I able to recognize Jesus when I am still in the middle of the storm and when He seems far in the distance?”
Often our tendency is to ask God to deliver us, to supernaturally remove us, or transport us from desperate or urgent circumstances. Sometimes God in His great mercy and grace does just that. And sometimes the greater revelation of His mercy and grace is better understood and experienced by daily communing with Him through our difficulties. Sometimes the only way to get through something is to actually go through it. And sometimes that journey is the only means we have to lay hold of of what we desperately need. T. Long