April 1, 2021
I can describe last year in many words and there are a few themes that I feel are universal. There’s been a lot of frustration, confusion and difficulty. For some of us the year could even be described as traumatic, depressing and upsetting. So many things have changed, and there have been many painful experiences. But one thing that this year was not, was hopeless.
When we look at the life of Jesus, we can see a lot of hardship and difficulty as well. It wasn’t just the physical suffering on the cross, but there were a lot of other painful experiences too. Jesus had to go through the loss of friends, loneliness, betrayal and mocking. At the end he triumphed over all of it, he defeated death and suffering.
Jesus’ triumph is a reason for a great feast and celebration, and not just on Easter Sunday, but every day. His resurrection gives us a reason to be joyful and gives us hope, even in the current, difficult situation.
In John 14 Jesus comforts his disciples:
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told yuo that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”
I believe that he’s preparing a place for us, a place where there will be no suffering and hardship, a place where we can all freely and endlessly worship God and be in his presence. However, Jesus is with us now. He’s our strength and deliverance, and that’s why difficult times are not hopeless; on the contrary, we have plenty of reasons to celebrate.