"And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith." - 1 Corinthians 15:14
Last year, Robert & I started a new tradition; an annual early morning Easter walk/bike ride in a forest preserve, just Robert and I - no children. A time for he and I to spend alone with God. Making Easter meaningful. Yes, everyday is opportunity to make Easter meaningful, but far too often the holidays rush in and blur the meaning. We want to intentionally and purposefully set our eyes on Him as to not let the meaning fade into the background.
Easter is the most important holiday. Without Easter, Christmas would be meaningless....would not exist.
Another reason why our new tradition is of importance is because it marks a renewal of sorts. These last few years has been a journey. A painful one at times. It's been laced with struggles, grace, humility, and sweet understanding. It's the truths of God that has carried us to this day. By God's grace through faith we have been strengthened. Over the last few years, we have been going through a renewal, but most especially over this last year. I am forever thankful for a forgiving, loving, just God who expects obedience.
Over this past year, I have struggled with the will of God. I have felt torn between myself and God's truth. I've often asked, "What is God's will?" It's interesting to me, as I reflect over this past year, as to how God has worked in my life. Many moments, words and situations have pointed to His will which have been revealed in scriptures that I've read and studied. Seriously. It's not a matter of "I want to do God's will". It's a matter of "I want to be in God's will." I believe that to be in God's will, I need to be in the Bible. But while I believe the scriptures are where God's will is revealed, I also believe that He has not revealed all, and nor is all for me to know.
The thing is, I sin. Everyday, I sin. No matter how much I want to be in God's will, I sin. And, ultimately, my sins are against Him. I am ever so thankful for God's grace. I am thankful for the ability given to me to repent and receive forgiveness.
"...The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem." - Luke 24:46-47
While I do not have near enough understanding, I can see how, over these last few years, God has been using my struggles, trials and transgressions for His good. I am finding it ever so amazing how God has been working in my life...in our life.
Today, on this silent day between Good Friday and Easter day, I am reminded that while I wait for whatever it may be in life, I have hope in Him. A hope that all things will work for His good. A hope that solidly rests in Him. There is tremendous peace and calm in that truth.
So, on this silent day because I have to work tomorrow, Robert and I took our annual walk in the forest preserve, and spent time in the scriptures. We took our moment, together, to keep the gift of God's grace meaningful. The gift of His son taking our place --- substituting himself for us so that we may have life.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade - kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time." - 1 Peter 1:3-5
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Music that has had meaning to me.....