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Resurrection Sunday - Hope Exceeded

"On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright, the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, "Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; He has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 'The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again'.'" Then they remembered His words."  Luke 24:6-8

On Saturday, the women wept and sat in their disillusionment, but on Sunday their Friday and Saturday made sense. The promises and the words they had heard before and thought they understood so well danced to life in their swirling minds as the angel proclaimed Jesus had risen. The full weight of what was happening began to unfold in their minds, but would take a lifetime to understand. Their understanding had been small in comparison to the truth of what Jesus had spoken.

Jesus had not come to free a people from earthly rule, but had come to free mankind from demonic rule. The hidden evil that had driven all visible evil had been defeated. Those who had been chained to the darkness of regret, sin and shame now sat in prison cells with doors wide open and chains cut. Some would choose to remain in their cells of sin and shame, but all would be free to leave. The Cross had paved the way and bridged the gap from death to life. Saturday made sense in light of Sunday, but they didn't know it until Sunday arrived. A day birthed in an ordinary way was pregnant with an unexpected brightness rising on mankind. 

We can live our lives in the brightness of the resurrected Jesus. The Cross is grace for our lives. There is not a struggle or sin we have that leaves the Cross powerless. There is not a disappointment we carry, that Jesus' strong arms can't hold. There is not a pain in our lives that goes unnoticed by the Cross-carrying and Cross-suffering Christ who daily bears our burdens. His promises hold true and will always exceed our expectations when we begin to see clearly. Let us look to Him and trust His goodness in the middle of our 'not yets.' May we live our lives looking to the Resurrected Jesus as our hope.

No matter where we find ourselves in our lives, may we "lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:1-2