Easter Is Over – Now What?

It’s been a few days since Easter Sunday, and I am praying you’ve not only been able to rest but that you’ve also been able to see how God is using the multiple ways you invested in the kids and families in your community this past weekend.

Though Easter is now past us on this calendar year, and summer is on the horizon, it’s vital we pause long enough at the empty tomb to fully soak in a life-changing truth before we head into all that the end of the school year and summer holds.

We have been promised the very presence of Christ – the presence of the death-defeating, resurrected, powerful, victorious Savior. As we go about our ministry of reconciliation that He has entrusted to us as His ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:19), He guarantees us the power and presence of His Spirit as we go (Matthew 28:19-20).

I know this. I know you know this. We teach about this. But here’s the thing, friend… I wonder if you need to be enraptured by this, to wonder at this, and be freshly awe-inspired by this once more like I did.

See, when to-do lists and distractions pop up like dandelions in the summertime, it’s easy to let the things we “know” get a little dusty. We unwittingly allow them to fade just enough that we forget to remember: the power that claimed victory over the cross and the grave is the same power granted to those who go about the mission of Jesus Christ.

I find the moment that Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene at the tomb to be captivating. Mostly because, in her grief and the cacophony of questions reverberating through her spirit, she didn’t recognize His voice and His presence until He said her name (John 20:13-18). I wonder why it was that moment when it all came together for her. Something about how He said her name helped her realize Who was actually with her.

I’m not sure about you, but, when things are hard, it’s difficult for me to make out His voice in the noise reverberating through my spirit, too. So, in these few days after celebrating the empty tomb, I know I have to pause there a little longer. I quiet my heart and reflect on the great love shown in how His followers got to see Him after His resurrection. The tenderness of His patient and gracious heart in letting their doubt fade away as they felt where the nails pierced His hands, saw His side, and heard His voice. The simple, beautiful care He showed in the way He chose the setting of breakfast on the beach to communicate how He wanted them to love His church.

All of these things together reveal that our resurrected Lord wants His disciples – then and today – to remember: He is always giving us the gift of His presence, His power is ours as we go about His mission, and He not only knows your name, He speaks your name.

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