On the first day of the week,
Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning,
while it was still dark,
and saw the stone removed from the tomb.
So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them,
"They have taken the Lord from the tomb,
and we don't know where they put him."
So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.
They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter
and arrived at the tomb first;
he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in.
When Simon Peter arrived after him,
he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there,
and the cloth that had covered his head,
not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place.
Then the other disciple also went in,
the one who had arrived at the tomb first,
and he saw and believed.
For they did not yet understand the Scripture
that he had to rise from the dead.
Jesus is risen! Alleluia! When I was in college one of my theology teachers and advisor was fond of saying, “life will out.” His message was that life will always win out- overcome whatever challenges it faced. Death was never the final chapter. He was a very laid back, relaxed individual who never seemed to worry about anything because life will out. Easter proves him right. More accurately he arrived at the conclusion that life will out is because of the Resurrection. Alleluia! Jesus is risen.
All of creation screams that life will out. The bear awakening from his hibernation, the buds on the trees, return of the robins, the flower buds poking through the earth reminds us that life will out. Jesus’ resurrection tells us we can have confidence that life mysteriously happens. The Resurrection is difficult to understand. Mary was convinced that someone had stolen Jesus’ body. It ends with the phrase, “For they did not yet understand the Scripture that he had to rise from the dead.” It takes time for them to recognize that God cannot be contained. Life will emerge even overcoming death.
Let us ponder this truth. Death has no power. Sin can be undone. With joy, enthusiasm and excitement that we can acknowledge that the Resurrection means:
- Life will overcome death.
- Healing will overcome brokenness.
- Forgiveness will overcome sin.
- Peace will overcome war.
- Love will overcome hate.
- Hope will overcome despair.
- Contentment will overcome anxiety.
- Good will overcome evil.
- Faith will overcome doubt.
- Life will out! Do not be afraid any longer.
In the movie Parenthood, Frank Buckmans’ son Larry is in trouble. He asks his eldest son Gil for advice. During the conversation he tells Gill, as a parent, “there is no end zone. You never get to cross the goal line, spike the ball and do your touchdown dance. Never.” The resurrection changes all of that. It is the day that the winning touchdown has been scored. Life will never be a drudgery again. Redemption, salvation, joy, happiness, peace, love, hope, grace- is yours right now!
Life will out. As a people who have been redeemed and delivered from sin, death and drudgery we must promote life. In John 10, Jesus tells us that he came so that we can have life and have it to the fullest. Live life to the full! We can do this by seeing the beauty of life, embracing all that God provides through it. Have many experiences, build intimate relationships, smell the flowers, overcome fears, try something new, be uncomfortable. Find God in everything. God has chosen you. Say, yes. Do your dance and spike the ball! Life will out! Alleluia!
These Lenten reflections are written by friends of 12plus1, Inc. Discovery House, a service-based gap year experience for participants ages 18-20, will begin August 2018. Please share this information with an individuals who may want to participate or support this new ministry.
- How has life overcome death in your own experience?
- Where do you feel called to advocate for life?
This is the last of our Lenten reflections. Please take one minute to complete the SURVEY to help us know what, if any reflections you may want to read in the future. Thank you!
Joe Nettesheim is the founder and director of 12plus1. He has been involved in Church Ministry since 1991. He and his wife Maribeth have a blended family of 5 children, 2 sons in-law, 6 grandkids and a crazy 80 pound Golden Doodle, puppy TS Eliot.