"24 Hours: The First Day"

I’d love to talk about the bizarre hiccup of snow that we got again this weekend, but since that’s what I started with last week, then I’ll just wish you a very Happy Resurrection Sunday!

We had an incredibly busy but thoroughly enjoyable (and poignant) week here at First Covenant Church!

On Wednesday, we hosted around 100 people in taking part in our traditional Passover Seder meal, led by Jewish Christian missionary Roy Schwarcz, from Chosen People Ministries.  Roy did a wonderful job of showing from Scripture and tradition how God prefigured the salvific work of Jesus Christ in the elements of the Seder over the centuries, and then how Christ Himself made use of those elements to help His followers (including all of us) understand just what exactly was going to happen on the next day when He was crucified.

In our Good Friday service, we spent quality time truly reflecting on the work of Jesus Christ on the cross -- why He allowed Himself to die, and what kind of character He demonstrated to those around Him, even in the midst of His pain (and speaking of pain, feel free to ask anyone there why my hand still hurts after that service).  We were reminded to commit ourselves to living lives that would honor Christ by our willingness to serve, to love, to forgive, and to trust.  And we were reminded that as hard as Friday was, Sunday was coming...

So on Resurrection Sunday, we came together for a family breakfast as a church family (what a joy it was to see our Fellowship Hall filled to the brim twice in one week!), and then continued that fellowship as we came together in worship to celebrate that our Lord has risen from the dead.

Sara Diemer put together a beautiful video to start the morning off with (so ask someone from our A-V Team if you’d like to see it sometime), and we added several more songs to our morning lineup than we normally do.  We also spoke the Apostles’ Creed and prayed through the Lord’s Prayer together, and ended with a time of Communion as we linked the Lord’s Supper that we eat every month back to the Lord’s Seder that our Jewish cousins eat every year.  And even with the sermon, we still got out on time -- proving that God still works miracles!

Over the past several weeks, we’ve been looking at the last 24 hours in the life of Jesus Christ... so it just seemed appropriate on Resurrection Sunday to look at the first 24 hours of Christ’s resurrected life.  He made it a point to stop to meet with Mary Magdalene in a real, personal way.  He made it a point to stop and walk with a couple of believers on the road to Emmaus, then spend a moment at dinner with them.  He made it a point to stop and reconnect with His remaining disciples to show them personally and relationally that He was truly alive.  He kept making it a point to stop and tell people the Good News -- and to do it in the context of relationships.

So how can you and I live that out in our own lives today?  What relationships has God given you that you can use as an opportunity to tell the Good News?

He has risen!  He has risen indeed...