Death, where is your victory?!?

A few days ago, I was sitting in a consultation with a soon-to-be bride, discussing her wedding (I am a photographer). She had a great question to ask, but for some reason, her question struck an uncomfortable nerve with me. She simply inquired about what would happen if something were to happen to me, before her wedding…you know, like I was in a terrible accident, I died, etc..

My stomach flip-flopped. It was simply a question, and a very good one, but it still got to me. Something about the thought of death tends to make us a little queasy and uneasy much of the time. For me, I tend to allow human thoughts and emotions to run wild at times, especially with topics such as this.

Last year, the day before Easter, my Pawpaw passed away. It was a very difficult weekend, and the past year has been tough for my family.He was the patriarch of our family, and we all loved him dearly. He had a special relationship with each person in the family, and it still feels surreal to have him gone from this earth.

Death is not easy. It is not easy to ponder and it is difficult to understand at times.

Over 2,000 years ago, a handful of people were mourning the death of their beloved friend, son, teacher, brother, and Lord. Jesus was dead. Their King had been nailed to a cross, and had suffered one of the most horrific deaths possible. He had been mocked, tortured, ridiculed, and ultimately killed. His friends and family likely felt hopeless and full of despair. It was a dark time.

I am most certain that Jesus’ friends and family, pondered and relived those last days and hours that they had with their Lord. I’m sure that the disciples wondered if they could have done more to help when Jesus was arrested in the garden. I can imagine that they each recounted conversations and interactions that they’d had with Judas, probably wondering if they had missed an important clue that would have revealed him to be Jesus’ betrayer, instead of friend. Peter, undoubtedly, felt ashamed and unworthy, due to his own betrayal and denial of Jesus. As a mother, I am certain that Mary was broken as she recalled Jesus as a tiny baby, joyful toddler, and wise son. There were likely many tears, questions, and uncertainty about the days to come. It was very dark.

But, it did not stay dark! On the third day, Jesus rose from the dead, alive and victorious! We know the story, but do we know the implications of this? He is alive now, and because of that, we can have fellowship with our Heavenly Father, through Jesus. Amen! This truth is so amazing for us! We don’t deserve it, nor will we ever deserve it, but praise God, He is a gracious and loving God, who has made a way!

What a beautiful and divine plan that God has ordained for us, through the death and resurrection of Jesus! There is hope, when we know Him! There is life! There is joy!

Even more, we don’t have to fear death. Death has NO victory over us, when we follow Christ! We have hope! Check it out:

“Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord itself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meed the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” {1 Thessalonians 4:13-18}

What a beautiful and hope filled passage of God’s Word!  “And so we will be with the Lord forever” …yes, please! While we may temporarily grieve the loss of an earthly companion, family member or friend, we are not hopeless, as those who do not know Christ. We have a promise. I am saddened for those that are not followers of Jesus, because they are missing out! What a hopeless and despairing place to be, when you don’t have the promise of life. (Perhaps you feel hopeless and don’t understand what in the world I’m talking about – email me, comment, whichever you’d like – I’d love to talk with you and pray for you!)

Let’s encourage one another in this, and above all, let’s remember the reason for our hope. Let’s strive to share this beautiful promise of life, with those that have not yet experienced Jesus. As we celebrate this Easter weekend, we should not fail to remember Jesus. We should not fail our friends, our family, or anyone that we know, by not sharing this promise of hope. We are commissioned to do so (Matt 28:19-20), by Jesus, himself! We can not be selfish with Jesus! Share more than eggs and Easter dinner this weekend. Share hope and life! Let your joy be abundant. Let your hope be seen. 🙂



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