If you’ve ever stopped to marvel at creation, you’ve discovered that there is no lack of things to appreciate. One of my favorites is the perseverance of new growth. No matter the conditions, plants somehow find a way. You’ve seen it. The head of a new fern peeking through concrete; a delicate pansy bursting up from your driveway; things that the human hand could never break through somehow give way to the slow and steady.
Yet, before these plants could bask in the light of the sun, they had to experience their own burial. Without this, they would never know life.
The same is true of us. This Easter season we celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Even more, we recognize that without the saving work of God we are dead in our sins, unable to produce the physical and spiritual life that God designed for us. However, just as tar is not strong enough to keep new life from bursting through, sin cannot stand before the slow and steady work of our God.
Every day at Alternatives we see this tension between death and life. I’ve observed clients arrive visibly weighed down by the burdens they carry. There is no trace of hope or joy, but rather an overwhelming lostness. While they may or may not know Christ, it is our sincerest desire that they know their present circumstances will not last forever. We pray that while they may feel the constraints of a grave, it is never too late for our God to intervene. Perhaps one day their burdens would give way to new life.
May this be true for all of us. No matter what we are shouldering this day, we can bask in the light of Christ’s resurrection. We can know that whatever burial we face, it will one day give way to new life. Our God works in the mystery of the grave, renewing, and preparing us. Wherever we’re at in this process, we can take hope, for absolutely nothing can separate us from the love of our God
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” – Romans 8:35-39
Easter Reflection written by Kristen Rummel, Church Development Coordinator