Category Archives: Reality

Meeting Jesus

After Christ was crucified, there was grieving and hopelessness. On Sunday, the women went to the tomb expecting to find Jesus still dead. They went to the tomb filled with hopelessness and despair. They were undoubtedly very depressed and heavy hearted. As they walked, they no longer had the joy they once had while Jesus was with them.

They were overjoyed to hear that He had risen. They hurried from the tomb to tell the others. It is written that they were filled with joy and also fearful. They continued to walk. When Jesus revealed Himself to the women, they worshiped Him. Their dark dreadful day has been transformed into one with excitement and new hope. Their steps as they go to tell the others are filled with joy.

The steps to the tomb were greatly contrasted from the steps they took leaving the tomb. What circumstances are you facing that may feel like you are walking to the tomb? Have your days been burdensome? Do you need a new hope? Do you need the joy put back into you step? The tomb is empty. The stone has been rolled away. You can walk away from that emptiness to meet Jesus. He can put the joy back into your step. Your day does not have to remain hopeless. Meeting Jesus can give you a hope and a joy no matter what you face during your day.

Maybe you know the joy of meeting Jesus. Is your joy so overflowing that you must tell someone? It is so overflowing that it overcomes the fears that you have? These women were so devoted to Jesus that they were there during His crucifixion and wanted to tend to His body after His death. Jesus will reward your devotion to Him. If you want to have more joy, you can be honest with Jesus and ask Him to give you joy that you want to tell others about. You can also ask Him to give you what you need to overcome your fears no matter what those fears are.

Does Love Motivate You?

Some women (Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, Salome, Joanna and possibly more) were on their way to Jesus’ tomb. Surely, they felt hopeless and sad. They had been with Jesus as He rode the colt into Jerusalem where they were feeling joy and hope and many were praising Jesus. What a glorious time. Now as they walked, their minds were filled with torturous scenes of the crucifixion. They had seen it all. When Jesus breathed His last, something also died in them. They were alive physically but their soul felt dead. Their hope and joy had died on that cross.

What drove them out so early on Sunday Morning? Couldn’t they just stay in and mourn for their loss, feeling sorry for themselves? They weren’t headed out to do an easy task. It would not be something they were used to doing or something they would be comfortable doing. Who else would do what they felt called to do? They were motivated by their love for Jesus.

As they walked they realized a problem. They remember that there was a stone in front of the tomb that would hinder what they set out to do. How would they accomplish their mission with this obstacle in the way and who would move it? They continued to walk. They did not let their thought stop them from continuing. As they approached the tomb, they realized the stone had already been rolled away. Their perceived problem ceased to exist.

According to Matthew there was a violent earthquake and an angel of the Lord rolled away the stone. Who was the stone moved for? Jesus had already risen. He did not need to have the stone moved. Even if He did, he would not have needed anyone to do it for Him. It was rolled away for the women and it was rolled away for us.

Once Mary and Mary realized the tomb was empty and believed their Savior had risen, they were filled with joy and were on a direct path that would lead them to meet their risen Savior. Are you on a path that will lead to your Savior? Are you motivated by your love for Jesus to do what He calls you to do? Do you believe He will move the obstacles in your life so that you can accomplish what He asks of you?

Let God’s SON Shine

Easter is about a dark Friday that took the life of God’s Son, the life of a loving innocent man, Mary’s son, the friend and leader of many. Mary felt the darkness. His friends and followers felt the darkness. They were filled with despair and helplessness. What was going to happen next? What were they to do now? Who can they turn to in their fear?

Easter Morning started out dark just as all days and then as the Sun began to rise, the slightest glimpse of light began to reveal itself. Some women (Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, Salome, Joanna and possibly more) probably filled with despair and uncertainty began to walk to the tomb where Jesus’ body was buried. They did not know of the resurrection yet. They thought they were going to be in a sad, fearful place where they were probably going to be uncomfortable in their surroundings as well as their ministry. As they walked, they realized they had a problem. They were beginning to feel helpless in the realization that they had a big stone that would hinder their purpose for going to the tomb. They continued to walk. The light of the sunrise grew in brightness until the shadows and darkness were no more. As the women approached the tomb, they realized the stone had already been rolled away. The problem the women thought they had did not even exist. It had already been taken care of.

How many times do we feel called to do something uncomfortable? Even if we start out, what do we do when we begin to see an obstacle? Do we use it as an excuse to turn back and not put an effort into what we set out to do or do we keep walking?

God continues today to roll stones away, He continues to shed light in our darkness. He continues to help us overcome our fear, our despair, our helplessness. We just need to continue walking where God leads us. Whatever obstacle that we come upon, He will help us overcome it, move it before we get to it, or give us the strength to live with it. No matter what you feel God calling you to do, don’t let the stones keep you from walking toward the calling.

Stones can be exterior such as finances, housing, transportation, etc. They can be interior such as depression, lack of confidence, uncertainty, anger, frustration, resentment, pain, stubbornness, bad memories, etc. No matter what the stones are God can help you deal with them. Sometimes He may choose to break the stones up instead of removing them. It can be painful as He reveals the broken pieces, but He will give you strength to overcome.

Sometimes we may even be looking for stones in our path. What do you hear yourself saying? “I can’t”, “I’m too young”, “I’m too old”, “Someone else can do a better job”, “I may fail”. Let’s do what God calls us to do. If He didn’t think you were the best for the job, He wouldn’t be asking you to do it.

Let this Easter be the time to shed light on the darkness in your life. Let God remove the stones that are blocking the light. Let God fill your heart with love, patience, peace, etc. Let the SON shine in your life.

Multiplied or Wasted?

If your life was $1000 bill and you gave it to God, what if He multiplied it and gave it back to you as several thousand $1 bills? Each day you would be asked to give Him $1 to represent your daily commitment to Him. The giving of the $1000 would represent you giving your life to Him for His gift of salvation. In no way does this imply that salvation can be bought with money because it cannot be purchased or earned. God giving you several thousand $1 bills in return represents how much more you will have when you give your life to him and the free will that He gives you to choose everyday whether you want to live that day for Him or not. Each $1 will represent a day of your life. We only have so many. We will have the choice to give it to him to multiply it and use it or to keep it and waste it. How many days have you already wasted? Do you wake each morning and take up your cross to follow Jesus? How will you spend your remaining days/dollars?

If you have a $20 bill to represent your day, $1 for each hour, how much of it will be given to Jesus? How well are you spending your time?

Are We Grumbling or Grateful?

After our early winter snow storm, the sun came out. Normally this would be a good thing. However, for me, the snow and the following sun were both bad timing. Having my garage floor refinished, everything had to be moved to a storage container which was situated in the driveway.  At the time the exact location for setting it up was chosen, it was still rather warm outside with no threat of what occurred this day. The warm sunshine melting the snow on the roof had dripped onto the container doors and concrete driveway apron, both of which were shaded from the sun, and therefore frozen into a lovely smooth thick glaze.

The sleds for enjoying the new snowfall were in the storage container. As I pulled with all my strength to crack the ice and release the latch to open the door, I forgot that I was standing on the same substance I was dealing with on the doors. Suddenly the latch gave way and at the same time so did my feet. Up went the feet and down went the cheeks and as I immediately realized they didn’t contain the amount of padding they used to, the upper set of cheeks went down too as I was now on the verge of tears. The pain was atrocious and my first thought was of my friend who was right then in the hospital with a broken hip from falling on the ice. I sat for a few minutes until the pain subsided enough to move. Of course Jessie, Jodi, Mila (dog) and the three boys had just left on a walk. And I was hidden from the neighbors by the container. (Thankfully!) So there was nobody to share my misery with. I did eventually get up and was thankful that nothing was broken. And I painfully went on with the day.

I should have considered there might be a lesson here. If I had, I might not have had to endure another painful black and blue hip.

At work we use a lot of plastic bands for securing mail. In training we had been warned of their danger and that we should pick up any that end up on the floor. A few weeks ago I was pulling a container when one of these straps fell from it. I only became aware of its presence as both my feet became victim of it. Have you ever been tackled? It was just like being tackled by the ankles except that I wasn’t on a nice soft football field wearing all my protective gear. I was on a bare cement floor. I went down so fast and so hard I didn’t have time to even see one second of my life flash before me. After realizing I was still alive, I rolled over on my back to assess the damage and noticed that right above me was a very wide, very solid concrete and steel pillar that I just barely missed hitting with my head.

Ok, lesson learned. I’m not only grateful that nothing is broken. I’m now also grateful that I’m alive. I bumped into a brand new grateful outlook on life. Instead of feeling bad that while everybody else is out partying I have to stay home and bake a birthday cake and get ready for a party that will happen while I’m at work, I’m grateful that I’m able to do what I’m doing. I don’t absolutely love going to work but I’m grateful that I have a job and am able to work. I see a lot more things to be grateful for. Everything that could be grumped about also has another side of it to be grateful for, etc.

Actually, I should have paid attention years ago to this lesson. It’s a dangerous thing to have to learn this way at my age.

Give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thes 5:18)

Author Shirley O