Reflections on the Resurrection, 2008

Reflections on the Resurrection

Because of its [esvbible reference=”John 19:14″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]proximity to the Jewish Passover[/esvbible], we observe and celebrate the death, burrial and resurrection of our Lord and Savior on a sure, if not exactly fixed, spot on the calendar. Even [esvbible reference=”Mark 16:9″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]the day of the week[/esvbible] of Christ’s resurrection is explicitly revealed to us in sacred Scriptures. Isn’t it ironic that, instead of Easter, most in America give far more attention and money to the “observance” and “celebration” of Christmas, a sure event in history, yet which has no sure anchor on the calendar. I am glad that God has seen fit to have it thus. I do not believe it is a coincidence that it turned out that way, for the Resurrection of Jesus is far more important than his birth. Wise Solomon told us – and he ought to know, from bitter experience – that [esvbible reference=”Ecclesiastes 7:8″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]the finish line is far more important than the starting blocks[/esvbible]. Now I know that it is impossible to finish something that never had a beginning, but the point is that many things get started that end badly, or are never finished at all. [esvbible reference=”Hebrews 12:2″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]Jesus finished well[/esvbible].

You can say what you want about the Easter egg rising out of pagan roots. I see nothing wrong with [esvbible reference=”2 Corinthians 10:5″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]”stealing” the enemy’s symbols and redeeming them for our own purposes[/esvbible]. Say what you want; the egg is the perfect illustration for new life. As a kid my cousins and I would hunt those eggs as many times as we could get the adults to hide them. By the time we were finished most of the color was worn off of the ones we could find. We always left a few behind for the dog later in the day, and the mower later in the week. Pagan as it all may have been, I don’t remember an Easter when the grown-ups didn’t remind us of Jesus’ rising from the grave early on that first Easter morning, conquering over sin and death. We knew what Easter was all about. Our kids are grown now and have children of their own. This year I can’t wait to hide ’em as many times as they want us to, and I can’t wait to tell them about my marvelous Savior who rose from the grave on Easter morning, and [esvbible reference=”Romans 8:11″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]will raise all who are his on the last day[/esvbible].

I especially appreciate the happy Providence of the confluence of Easter and the vernal equinox, commonly known as spring time. I hate winter (There, I’ve said it.) with all of its uncertainty of bluster and bite. Most who say they love the winter don’t have to work in it. Even here in Oklahoma it is all I can do to endure the winter months. Maybe it is worse for me because I work mostly at night, and I hate the darkness just as much as winter. Maybe it is worse here because we will have a few nice days followed by a few miserable days, and then you start the cycle all over again, continuing with general uncertainty from Christmas till Easter. This winter has been especially hard, with a massive state-wide ice storm in December which left very few trees without significant damage. Many trees were beyond help and had to be cut down. We finally decided to cut down four large Pines and one huge Sycamore. New trees can be planted to replace the old, however. This winter took something from me far more important than a few Pine trees. Last month the winter of this mortal world took my Mom. So the coming of this Spring has been so much the picture of Easter to me: New Life, Colorful and Fragrant, coming from (seeming) dead, cold and gray; bringing heartache, depression, misery and dispair. That is what Jesus did when he [esvbible reference=”2 Corinthians 5:17, 1 Corinthians 15:51-57″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]rose from the grave[/esvbible].

My mother loved our little acreage. It seems that Easter was her first outing of each year to come up to see what was new, what had survived, thrived, or died. We shared a love for all things green and blooming out of doors. She would see something in a magazine and I would grow some for her, but we would both try it. Anything new I had discovered, she would want to try it too. Though we only lived sixty miles away, the soil at our place was a gardener’s paradise, while Mom and Dad’s soil came from that other place we won’t mention. She made up the deficit by sheer determination. Not everything, but a good bit survived down there. Some things even did well. She sure could grow a mean garden in that muck.

Every year it was the same. Mom would slip out after the afternoon feast, before anyone was ready to hide Easter eggs, so that she could walk among the young trees and shrubs alone. I know; she wanted to get out, away from other family members to steal a smoke. She was private like that, ashamed of a habit of a half-century’s span, but that was okay. I loved her. She was my Mom. But she really did go out to see, to study, to enjoy the new life peeking out, to see a picture of the Resurrection in every green spear and pink bud. I’m going to miss seeing her slight figure out there this Easter. But the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior is going to have a richer, more personal interest for me this year as I ponder its [esvbible reference=”1 Corinthians 15:12-20″ header=”on” format=”tooltip”]absolute necessity[/esvbible]. I may have to take a stroll out there myself, before we hide the Easter eggs, just to see what she saw.

Jesus Lives, And So Shall I


Jesus lives, and so shall I.
Death! thy sting is gone forever!
He who deigned for me to die,
Lives, the bands of death to sever.
He shall raise me from the dust:
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, and reigns supreme,
And, his kingdom still remaining,
I shall also be with him,
Ever living, ever reigning.
God has promised: be it must:
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, and by his grace,
Vict’ry o’er my passions giving,
I will cleanse my heart and ways,
Ever to his glory living.
Me he raises from the dust.
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, I know full well
Nought from him my heart can sever,
Life nor death nor powers of hell,
Joy nor grief, hence forth forever.
None of all his saints is lost;
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, and death is now
But my entrance into glory.
Courage, then, my soul, for thou
Hast a crown of life before thee;
Thou shalt find thy hopes were just;
Jesus is the Christian’s Trust.

This entry was posted in death, holidays, Music, Resurrection. Bookmark the permalink.