Resurrection at its core, confronts.
It confronts death and fear. Resurrection is about more than death, it’s about losing life, losing those things closest to you, losing dreams and then waking up from this sleep.
I had the pleasure of being blessed to know a young couple that had been in love with each other since kindergarten, if you were to ask them they’d say everything has been perfect for them.
Duties were oppositely divided; she was a prominent and active attorney. He however stayed home and tended to the needs of the house and family.
The wedding was three days away.
The husband received a phone call with very little details other than being notified that his wife is in the hospital, as you can imagine panic ensued quickly.
He arrives at the hospital, to find a former client had shot his wife. She had been temporarily paralyzed. Needless to say she wasn’t going to walk down the isle anytime soon.
While she’s awake they prayed for God to show up, to do a miracle, after all this is the God they have always believed in. While she is sleep he makes the calls to family and businesses to cancel the wedding.
Well visit this story later, but right now I want to to focus on a very real part of life. Death.
I fondly remember my visit to a Vacation Bible School classroom, the kids had so Many questions for me, you will be amazed sometimes if you just listen to the questions your kids have.
Somehow we got on the subject of divirsity and one kid yelled out, “Ricky! What do we all have in common?”
Without a chance to answer because I had to take a moment to ponder a Christian Correct answer and a kid friendly response, one of the kids yelled out, “we all die!”
What a dark yet insightful answer I thought and it still sticks with me to this day.
Death is powerful, death is unavoidable, and death doesn’t seclude anyone. Death is not like us, it doesn’t discriminate, and this is true for physical death and spiritual death.
Death is the one time we see Jesus angry in one situation and tearful in another.
He said to one of his disciples, “let the dead bury themselves.” (Matt 8:22) when a young follower needed to go to a family funeral, Jesus was angry because other business had to be taken care of at that moment.
In another incident Jesus was approached by two sisters with a history with Jesus, Mary and Martha, their brother Lazarus was laying dead in a tomb and they needed the help of Jesus. (John 11)
A pause follows, and then we read that Jesus wept, simply and shortly said, but powerfully visual (John 11:35) this thing called death even brought Jesus to tears.
When I hear that, “come forth” for Lazarus to rise out of that tomb, I here, come forth dead dreams, dead hopes, maybe Jesus wasn’t just limiting this “come forth” to the life in Lazarus, but maybe to my everyday, to your bad day at work, your rejected album submission letters, your book project.
I am defined by what I overcome, and this Jesus taught that we, yes you, and even me, we can overcome this death.
Because I’ve died, I’ve woken up and I’ve felt so dead some mornings and with some unexpected blessing Life comes out of nowhere.
I can go on all day about life because I’ve experienced death, death is no who I am, I have overcome death, and I am overcoming death everyday.
Death cannot stop you, depression cannot stop you. Life is promised to you.
Adapted from the upcoming book, An Emerging Spirituality by Ricky Maye and Alex Gamble