Tearfund’s Gideon Heugh reflects on what the Resurrection means for us today.
It’s Easter weekend – a time when we eat chocolate eggs to celebrate the death and resurrection of a Jewish man from the Ancient Near East.
You couldn’t make it up.
This will be the thirty-first year that I’ve heard the Easter message. And, if I’m being completely honest, there have been times when I’ve struggled to see what it has to do with my day-to-day existence.
Because the Resurrection can feel quite grandiose, can’t it? The defeat of sin and death. The ultimate triumph of good over evil. Christ laying down his life for our sake.
It’s astonishing, extraordinary, awe-inspiring. But like a sunrise over a mountain range, perhaps it can also seem a little… out of reach.
However, in recent years I’ve started to think about it in a new way. God wants us to know that the Resurrection wasn’t just something that happened 2,000 years ago. It’s an eternal truth. It shakes the air around us.
‘...he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.’ (Romans 8:11b)
The Spirit of Christ – a spirit of endless love and renewal and possibility – is in all of us.
That disappointment you think you can't come back from? You can come back from it. That pit of despair that you can’t seem to escape? You can be lifted out. Those clouds of sadness hanging over you? There’s a wind that’s been blowing since the beginning of time that can clear them away.
The Resurrection is the great ‘but then’ of history. I thought it was over, but then… I didn’t think there was a way out, but then… I didn’t think I’d ever feel whole again, but then…
This is the message that Tearfund tries to instil in people who have been laid low by poverty: you have the power to rise up. Because Christ rose up. And now Christ lives in you.
This weekend, we fix our eyes upon your cross. The symbol of love. The symbol of hope. The symbol of redemption.
Give each of us a fresh revelation of your resurrection. Teach each of us to live our lives in the knowledge that you are with us, and that your Spirit flows through us.
May we always look to you in times of crisis, sadness and failure – knowing that love has had the final say.
In your precious name, amen.