As I write this, the calendar says spring has arrived, but the forecast still screams that winter isn’t leaving. It can be a little discouraging knowing something is coming, but to see no signs of it.
Good Friday must have been extremely disappointing for Jesus’ followers. Not only was their friend and leader executed as a criminal, but their hopes for a victorious future were also dead. Jesus promised that the Kingdom of God was here, but evil still ruled the day. As the sun went down, there looked to be nothing good about that Friday. But like a bulb buried deep in the ground, God’s victory was about to burst forth in all its glory.
Mark 16:6 records what an angel said to the early morning visitors on that first Easter: “Don’t be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Look, this is where they laid his body” (NLT). Easter reminds us all that God is victorious even over the darkest circumstances. Jesus’ followers realized that this victory was much bigger than just victory over their earthly troubles. Immediately after humanity fell into sin, God promised that the Redeemer would come. In Genesis 3:15, God prophesied against our enemy by saying, “I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel.” This picture beautifully illustrates the victory that the cross represents. It was created by a student at Bethlehem Baptist Seminary in Minnesota. For more information, visit http://fullofeyes.deviantart.com/art/Genesis-3-15-439031092
Jesus came to bring victory over sin--our sin! He came to transform our lives from the inside out.
This month our children's ministry is focused on the importance of ”modeling” the Christian life. We want to say, "I see Christ in other, and they can see him in me.” Now, there may be days when we look in the mirror and see very little of Christ in our lives. Like our long hard winter, we may become discouraged that the transformation God promises is not evident. But just because we can’t see something doesn’t mean it’s not coming. Cling to the promises of God and remember that his kingdom is like a seed. My prayer for you and your family comes from Philippians 1:6 which says, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”
May our children see the process of transformation in our lives—just as they will hopefully soon see a transformation in the weather!
Dan Huffman, Children's Pastor of The Chapel