After Easter Comes What?

easter

“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”  Galatians 2:20

After Easter…how do I live?  Do I go back to ways that forget what the Crucified Christ means to me and how His resurrection affects me?

Easter is central to my Christian beliefs.  His crucifixion is very difficult for me and yet His resurrection is resplendent.  Easter is a beautiful remembrance of all Christ did for me over 2,000 years ago and Who He is to me now.  I want to live intentionally and thoughtfully in regards to what it means to be a person of the Resurrection in my world all year.  I want to continuously experience the Presence of the Living Christ.  I want to then walk in His Presence before others.

Yet, I seem to still be in the womb so much of the time, afraid to come out.  (As a baby in my mother’s womb, I did not want to exit then either!  Mom said her labor was hard and long.  “You just fought,” she said.)  Christ holds me near as I learn to walk in His Light more and more.  I must come out from the womb, that darkness.  I am to do His will on roads, in cafes, in hospital rooms, in homes…the world.  This is not a doable calling from a safe, warm womb.  

He will swallow up death forever; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces, and the reproach of His people He will take away from all the earth, for the LORD has spoken.  Isaiah 25:8 ESV

As a person of the Resurrection, I would like to believe that my life shines Christ for others to see, hear, and read, sensing that they have touched the Living Christ, the Hand of God.  Sometimes, this is true, but not always, to be sure.  I want to be less of Linda and more of Christ with each moment.  I am continuously being woven into the tapestry that will be perfect in Eternity…one.thread.at.a.time.

Easter brings HOPE.  As a person of the Resurrection, I pray I am able to offer the beauty of HOPE to a world that finds reasons all around for despair, fear, and hopelessness.

Being a person of the Resurrection allows me to live under the umbrella of God’s GRACE and MERCY.  I accept His forgiveness, offered to me in love.  I pray, too, that I may give these generously.

Easter is all about LOVE“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”  John 3:16  As a person of the Resurrection, I desire to love from His heart, to give from His hand, and share the LORD through my actions, words, love, and life.  May this LOVE cause me to be open and caring towards others. 

As a person of the Resurrection, I do know that the Holy Spirit has come upon me.  I also know that my humanness squelches Him under the Linda that thinks she needs to be in control. Forgive me, LORD.  Please forgive me.  

As a person of the Resurrection, I no longer live in the dark, but carry the Light of Jesus within me as I share light in a dark world.

Delightful Daffodils

God, make me Yours wholly.  Give me courage and strength to be the Linda You desire of me.  Give me wisdom that I would have Your Words and the openness to share Your Truth.   I want to be one of Your people of the Resurrection each and every day, walking in faith.  As You continue to grow me, may I spread hope, love, grace, mercy, and light through Your Truth.  Thank You for giving me life through the death and resurrection of Your One and Only Son, Christ Jesus.  You truly are gracious towards me, Father.  May I carry a Daffodil of peace with me, LORD, wherever I go.  Daffodils just seems to be filled with hope, joy, love, and beauty, all that You are Abba Father.  In the Name of Your Son, I pray.  Amen.

beblacksig

He has Risen!

mark-16-6

And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, Who was crucified. He has risen; He is not here. See the place where they laid Him.  Mark 16:6

May this Easter weekend remind us of Whose we are, what He did for us, and why.  May we humbly bow before the King of kings, the Lord of lords, and know His victory over death and the power of His resurrection.

Father God, thank You for Your Son.  You allowed His death to give me life.  You allowed Him to suffer to show me that I am sinful.  You allowed Jesus to walk this earth so that I would know You.  You allowed Christ to show Your forgiveness so that I would know that I am forgiven.  You allowed Jesus to love so that I would know that You loved me first.  I am forgiven and loved and saved by Your mercy and by Your grace, Father.  Thank You for Jesus.  Thank You for His death that I would be able to face each tomorrow knowing that I, too, will have final victory over death because I asked for forgiveness, asked to be His, and asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior.  I am so very blessed, my LORD.  In the Name of the Risen One.  Amen.  

bwturq sig

photo:  Christina Rivas

Unsearchable

romans11_33b
Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
  Romans 11:33

ἀνεξεραύνητος

anexeraunētos

not searched out, i.e. (by implication) inscrutable:—unsearchable

ἀνεξιχνίαστος

anexichniastos

not tracked out, i.e. (by implication) untraceable:—past finding out; unsearchable.

that cannot be comprehended

past finding out

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

These two Greek words almost look alike, mean almost the same thing with just slight changes.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Versions of the Bible use different words to lay this meaning out before us:

Oh, how great are God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his ways!  NLT

Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!  NKJV

Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!  NIV

Oh, the depth of the riches

both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God!

How unsearchable His judgments

and untraceable His ways!  HCSB

Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!  NASB

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how fathomless his ways!  NET

Impossible, untraceable, beyond our ability to trace or to find out, unfathomable…the greatness of God, His Omnipotence, His Omniscience, His Omnipresence…He is far more than we can possibly understand at this time.

Your righteousness is like the mountains of God;
Your judgments are like the great deep;
man and beast You save, O LORD.  Psalm 36:6

Your way was through the sea,
Your path through the great waters;
yet Your footprints were unseen.  Psalm 77:19

God, You are more than my mind can wrap around yet my heart feels Your love and Your care for me.  I know You are with me and hear my prayer.  You are unsearchable but I am learning more and more about You.  I am in love with You and praise You for Who You are.  I thank You with my whole heart for saving me through Your Son’s sacrifice and His love for me, for many such as I.  He was resurrected from the grave and told His disciples that He will return for them, for me.  One day, we will be together and You will still be more than I could have imagined here on this earth.  Will I be able to fathom You even then, Abba Father?  Your mercy, Your grace, Your greatness, Your faithfulness, Your power and Your might?  Jesus said that we may not understand but one day we will.  I look forward to that day, Abba Father.  I lift this prayer in the Name of Jesus.  Amen.

Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.”  John 13:7

grand-canyon-south-rim-overview-011

befuschiasig

Photo:  Heartlight.org @ http://www.heartlight.org/gallery/526.html

Am I an Easter Child?

iu

I ponder falling deeply in love, more than before, with my Jesus.  Opening God’s Word to the Gospels and Acts to read the life of resurrection with Jesus brings me repeatedly to words such as cleanse, heal, anoint, deliver.  Jesus did these things over and over again.  Resurrection in Him gives me powers unknown other than through Christ Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit.  Jesus called me to wait for the Holy Spirit.  He came.  He lives within me.

As Easter nears, I question my being an Easter person (per Ann Voskamp).  Oh, I am.  I was once lost but have been found, was dead and now live in Christ.  Hallelujah! 

Walking with Him yet in this world can make staying the course as an Easter person, as a Christian true to Christ, not easy.  When I am around those who know NOT Jesus as their LORD and Savoir, I struggle at times when I allow them to try to change me to be more like them, the world, rather than allow Christ to continually mold me into His Image.  I was once of this world and do not want to return to those ways.  I try to let others know my limitations, things I do not want to do, words I do not use, things that are no longer appropriate for me. I want to let them know ME, the me that is His.  I am His.  I am an Easter child.  I have been baptized with Christ and now I live.  I live this day for Him.  I ask His forgiveness when I do not open up and share Whose I am and why I am the way I am.  I want to share my spiritual heart as He surely wants me to.  I do not live wholly for Him before others sometimes and I am ashamed.  I am not ashamed of Him nor the Gospel, but am ashamed of myself.  What happens?  I sink into a hole and cannot get out.  The world begins to engulf me.  I feel like I am drowning.  I do not call for His help.  I should.  I must!  I am sorry, my LORD.  Forgive me.  You know I am Your Easter child.  Hold me and make me whole.  Let me start again.  

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life.  Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”  John 11:25-26

Living the resurrected life does begin again… can begin again.  Thank You, LORD.  Living the resurrected life calls for dependence, for waiting on the Holy Spirit.  Living the resurrected life is forgiveness, forever knowing that I am His.  I want never to forget this.  Living the resurrected life is prayer, kneeful, faceful praying.  Living the resurrected life is searching, pondering, loving the Truth.  Living the resurrected life is emerging from the shelter of the cocoon, not holding tight within it.  It is spreading my wings into the world, but not being of this world, taking flight as the resurrected Easter child I have been created to be.  I am to be His, to grow, to be molded into the beauty of the LORD.  The world has no influence upon me if and when I walk with Him.  And I stand tall, turn to Him, knowing that I do let Him down, knowing that He forgives and loves me.

As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning.  And I remembered the Word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’  If then God gave the same gift to them as He gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God’s way?”  When they heard these things they fell silent.  And they glorified God, saying, “Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.”  Acts 11:15-18

I am praising You, LORD.  Hallelujah!  You forgive me when I am not worthy.  You love me who does not deserve Your love.  You are God and I love You with my whole heart.  You are the Holy One of Israel Who bought the Israelites from captivity and gave them Promised Land.  You are the Blessed Savior Who has brought me out of the captive world to be Your child, Your child who looks forward to spending Eternity with You.  Oh, I am honored and unworthy at the same time.  Oh, how grateful I am to You.  I am an Easter child.  I pray in the Holy Name of Jesus.  Amen.   

beblacksig

United with Him

romans6_5

What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?  May it never be!  How shall we who died to sin still live in it?  Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death?  Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.  For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.  Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him.  For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God.  Romans 6:1-10 NASB

I laid my sins down, asking forgiveness.  Jesus took my sin to that Cross.  He hung on that cross for me.  I, too, died to that sin when He took it all.  He then rose from the Cross and I rose too… with Jesus.  I wanted to begin anew, and was born again… a new me.   Although the seed of sin is with me always, I am raised with Christ to walk a new life, a life free from that sin by obedience to Him.  This is my resurrected self.  Hallelujah!

Christ lives in me.  I live in union with Him just as two plants, growing closely to one another, grow together, become engrafted.  In Romans 6:5, the phrase “united with Him” reminds me of what I am trying to say here.  “United” is the Greek word symphytos meaning to be planted together, to grow along with….  I am intertwined with the life and death of Jesus Christ because I believe.  Finding definition for this unity I am given in Christ is in word after word: planted together, intertwined, engrafted, grown together, innate, kindred.

As a believer in Christ, I experience, spiritually, the “likeness of His resurrection” and then am raised anew with Him.  Romans 6:10 says that Christ “lives to God”.  As I am united with Him, I, too, am to live to God.  I am called to walk in His ways, in obedience, in love.

LORD, this is something I cannot do alone.  I know that it is impossible… for You are the One Who died for me, taking my sin to the Cross.  I kneel before You and ask You to teach me.  May I stand in intimate fellowship with You so that my new life would be consecrated to You and You Alone.  My word(s) for this year is “set apart”.  Being consecrated is to be set apart for You.  That is my desire.  May I be holy and acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit to You as I learn Your Way.  May I let the world know my gratitude from my countenance, LORD.  May I live with “holy gladness”, “holy boldness”, “cheerful holiness” as I live to God.   I pray in Your Holy Name, Jesus.  Amen.

7ec42bf5250e120e008c011f720562e2

photograph: http://www.heartlight.org/gallery/1401.html

“holy gladness”, “holy boldness”, “cheerful holiness” from  Charles H. Spurgeon, in “Morning and Evening” August 14th