Walking in light of the Resurrection

Walking in light of theMuch like Christmas, Easter tends to be one of those things that we do and move on with our lives. The only difference is that you don’t find a lot of people walking around wishing that we would live every day like it’s Easter. We love the Christmas spirit, the idea of peace on earth, and exchanging gifts. We want every day to be Christmas. Easter doesn’t get the same kind of sentiments. Maybe because it is seen by many as more a specifically Christian holiday, but still Easter just isn’t as big as Christmas. I’m sure some of you do wish that every day was Easter, but the vast majority of our culture has already moved on from Easter even though it was the beginning of this week.

As pilgrims walking with Jesus, however, this is exactly what we should not do. This last week, we celebrated the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Many of us have been on a journey to the cross from the beginning of Lent, and some of us joined in on Good Friday. Whatever the case, we all walked the road with Jesus from the Garden to Golgotha to the grave and their we waited to find the empty tomb on Sunday morning. Then most of us sung great songs, and went home. Then we got up on Monday morning and went back to life as usual. Many of us with little thought of how Jesus’ resurrection changed our lives.

Easter Monday should be different. We should wake up praising God for the new life that he has given us. We should wake up remember not only that Jesus died, but that he is alive! We should be changed by the resurrection.

When a pilgrim takes a journey and reaches the place that he has been journeying to, he doesn’t just take a few pictures for Instagram and then go home. He leaves that place knowing that he is different than when he started the journey however long ago. When we come to the end of Lent and we walk through Holy Week into Easter, we should leave different people. We didn’t just go to Six Flags for the day and have a fun time and go home, we have just walked with Jesus through the week that changed the world. Your life should be different today because of Easter.

What most of us focus on is that our next life will be different because of Easter, but we what need to do is remember that this life is different. N. T. Wright wrote this in his book Surprised by Hope,

“The whole point of what Jesus was up to was that he was doing, close up, in the present, what he was promising long-term, in the future. And what he was promising for the future, and doing in that present, was not saving souls for a disembodied eternity but rescuing people from the corruption and decay of the way the world presently is so they could enjoy, already in the present, that renewal of creation which is God’s ultimate purpose—and so they could thus become colleagues and partners in that larger project.” [1]

On the day after Christmas, there is a new hope in the world, but on the day after Easter there is a new world. There is new life and a new way to live. The Jesus life is available to all of us and we should start living like it. I know that the custom of our culture is to make resolutions on New Years, but the church should make resolutions on Easter. How are we going to walk in the newness of life the resurrection of Jesus Christ give us? How are we going to become colleagues and partners with God in the larger project of bringing new life to the world in the here and now?

[1] N. T. Wright, Surprised by Hope (HarperCollins, New York 2008), 192.

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