Now What Do We Do?

This month, as we rapidly approach the end of our Lenten journey, toward Easter (April 16). I am reminded of our need for renewal on this Lenten journey and the many times we gather to celebrate our traditions and custom that surround Easter. We celebrate "Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday, we transition into Holy Week, The Upper Room, Good Friday Lovefeast, and then, the long awaited day of Easter Sunrise and the Easter Worship arrives. When we gather on Easter morning, I say, " The Lord is risen! Then you say, "The Lord is risen indeed!" Have you ever thought; Now what do we do? Our Lenten Journey is over. We've traveled to the Upper Room on Maundy Thursday with Jesus and His disciples. We've heard "This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. Matthew 26:28NIV.

On Good Friday, we traveled to the foot of the Cross and heard Jesus lonely cry of abandonment, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me” Mark 15:34. We've heard the words of finality that Jesus spoke with his last breath, “It is finished!” (John 19:30). Jesus paid in full the cost of our sin debt; we're no longer separated from God. We've traveled to the empty tomb to hear again the story of the women that traveled there early on the first day of the week to find the tomb empty. We've heard once more the words of the angels at the empty tomb, “He is not here, but has risen” (Luke 24:6). The pivotal culmination of the Day of Jesus Resurrection is over. Now what do we do?

The month of April this year should remind us Easter is more than just one day. Jesus' Resurrection Day, should be part of every Sunday worship celebration we have. When we come together to worship on Sunday, we come together to collectively receive once more the fruit of the Cross and the Resurrection of Jesus— we come receiving the forgiveness of our sins and the certainty of our eternal life with God. Easter should be celebrated "every day" as we live trusting in God through Christ. "Every day" should be a day of celebration, knowing Jesus is “the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25) for us.

So what do we do now as we depart from the empty tomb? We are to follow the example of the first witnesses of the empty tomb. After the two angels reminded Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women that Jesus had risen, the Gospel of Luke tells us “they remembered the words, and returning from the tomb they told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest” (Luke 24:8-9). They went forth from the tomb changed by the Resurrection of Jesus. They went forth from the tomb to share their witness of God’s power over sin, death and Satan himself; to others.

So where do we go once we leave the empty tomb? We are to follow the example of Jesus’ first disciples. After Jesus walked through locked doors to appear to the eleven disciples and to show himself to Thomas, seven of the eleven disciples went back to their fishing business (John 21:1-14). They went back to their vocations in life and took the witness of the Resurrection with them. They lived "every day" in joy and celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus by carrying out their discipleship duties and responsibilities.

Have you ever stop to think how much we are like the women at the empty tomb and the eleven disciples, we too, are to be “every day” witnesses to the Resurrection of Jesus. As Jesus true disciples, we should make known the joy of the Resurrection of Jesus and the hope we have of eternal life. Like the women at the empty tomb and the eleven disciples, we have vocations in life that God has given to each of us as a gift. Most of us are not fishermen, but all of us have a particular calling on our life. Our calling could be: father, husband, mother, wife, son, daughter, brother, sister, grandparent, employee, retiree, friend and neighbor. Our calling comes with new loyalties and responsibilities to God. How do we accept our calling...Clearly, by God’s grace? We are to communicate our "every day" responsibilities with God's joy, love, peace, and forgiveness through Christ. We are to live "every day" with constant joy and celebration of Jesus Resurrection! Our Easter Morning Liturgy and hymn declare Jesus Resurrection: Sing Hallelujah, Praise the Lord. Moravian Book of Worship (MBW) Page 94 & 543....

In Christ Service,

Pastor Betty

You are always welcome at New Hope Moravian Church
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