Posts Tagged ‘Easter’

Easter Sunday March 28, 2010

  • Season: Easter
  • Sermon: The Only Hope
  • Scripture: Luke  24: 1-10
  • Songs:

9:30AM Service

  1. How Can I Keep From Singing
  2. Christ The Lord is Risen Today
  3. Everlasting God
  4. offertory:  It’s Your Love
  5. Communion: I Will Rise
  6. How Great Thou Art

11:00 AM Service

  1. Christ The Lord is Risen Today
  2. He Lives
  3. How Great Thou Art

What an Easter Sunday.  3 services, standing room only in the second service, men wearing pastel, women wearing hats, 3 baptisms and 6 confirmands, lots of music and Sydney dancing by the cross.  That is how we are called to break a fast; celebrating life.  My expectations were exceeded on Sunday.  I don’t mean the number of people.  I mean the worship of people.  There was simply a great community of worshipers on Sunday.  Some people didn’t even realize they were worshipping.  Joy filled the room.  I honestly had a hard time communicating what I wanted to say on Sunday and part of that is because it was already in the room, the other part is that because at the time I tried to cut my sermon in half on the fly.  I bring that up, not as an excuse, but so you understand what I am about to say.  Sometimes the words the preacher says are superfluous to the action that is going on.  We need celebration.  It is very easy to get caught up in the fears of this world and think that God only has something for us one day, but the fact is he has something for us today.  I am not in the one day, I am in the now and the good news is that God is in the now too.  We keep looking for the solution, the escape, the hope for our problems at home and around the world and Easter shows us the answer.  The answer is found on the blood of the cross and the empty tomb.

Why do we look for the living among the dead?  The point is that there is no longer the dead, but the living.  It is like this, we are told in scripture that God will turn our mourning into dancing.  This does not mean that we do not mourn.  Of course we will mourn.  It is sad to be separated from loved ones.  It is heartbreaking to see tragedy on the global scale as we have seen it over and over these many years.  But we do not mourn as if God is dead.  We do not mourn as those without hope.  We mourn with hope, expectation, and empowerment.  Why?  Because Jesus Christ rose from the dead.  This wasn’t the end, it was the beginning.  Jesus rose on the first day of the week.  The first day of the new creation.  This means we stand with Christ in his resurrection knowing that death and pain declare nothing obsolete, but the living presence of God declares that He will make all things new.  The question that should be before our eyes is if we are ready to view the world with the eyes of Christ.  No to view the world as something crippled by it’s own sin and decay, not as something to be feared, but as something to be liberated with the love and power of our Almighty God.  If you believe that God is raised from the dead, then yes our mourning can turn to dancing.   We dance the story of Christ to our neighbors, to our friends, to our co-workers, strangers and enemies.  We dance the passion and love of God through each movement of our chest as we breathe in and out the life of the Almighty.

Leave it to my daughter to steal the show and deliver the best sermon anyone could possibly see.  First she sees me singing while we are taking communion.  She shouts ‘Daddy!’  That should be our response to communion, to look with delight upon our heavenly Father and shout Daddy, as if to say “there you are, I delight in you as you delight in me”.  Sydney’s next point was to break free from her mommy while we sang How Great Thou Art and run up on the stage.  She danced around the communion table and then around the empty cross.  New life, full of energy and joy dancing in front of a symbol that was once meant for shame and death.  Take that Satan.  Take that death.  How Great God is indeed!  That is where we belong, dancing at the foot of an empty cross and an empty grave.  You see?  He turns our mourning into dancing.  That is the Easter Story.  Live it.


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