This year Easter is early according to the calendar, and with the non-spring we’ve had so far, I don’t really feel much like celebrating yet. Maybe that’s a little like Jesus felt. Let’s take a look.
Yesterday Jesus would have taken Jerusalem by storm; riding in on a donkey to cries of “Hosanna.” He’s got a week of teaching leading up to the Passover meal. A supper to remember the leaving of Egypt many years ago by the Israelites, who were about to be freed by God. Then there’s the betrayal and Good Friday when He’s crucified on a cross for the sins of the world. All of this culminates in being raised from the grave 3 days later. Celebration time, right?
Well, not quite. Jesus spent another 40 days on earth after that. He couldn’t go back to heaven where he had been for the past however many years, He couldn’t go back to God, He wasn’t quite done on earth. Yes, these last few days were important ones because they were days, meetings, interactions that proved His story; His death and resurrection. But I’d be a little tired of the work at that point in time too.
Jesus rose again, why is there need for more? In a way, those last days were a gift. They’re like the months that someone who finds out they have incurable cancer gets to live out to say their goodbyes. Those last days were also a chance for Jesus to make sure people understood the Scriptures and what they said about Him.
New life only happens after the old is gone. You can’t start something new if you’re holding onto the past. But breaking from what you know can be scary, even down right intimidating. But as Jesus knew, the best is yet to come. Getting past that last hurdle means you’re home free, free to that new life. But if you look at the Apostles who were with Jesus, they got over the hump and I believe they died proud of what they accomplished.
This week I encourage you to follow Jesus’ trail, take bold steps toward your freedom, even if they seem scary at times.