I was speaking with someone the other day who was describing a powerful time in their life. He described these weeks of his life and listed a number of challenging things that happened to him and how they had impacted him. It was impressive to hear how such events can be transformed into goodness. It strikes me that many of us readily accept that we need to transform bad into good. But what of good events – do we sense that we are to transform them into something better?
Too many are the times when we hear of lottery winners who go broke; children born to people incapable of parenting because of immaturity; high draft pick prospects who are thwarted by a drug test or other indiscretion. We wonder how people who have been given such great gifts, such wonderful opportunities, could not parlay those blessings into something even greater.
But aren’t we similarly smitten? Haven’t each of us won the lottery, been given a precious life, and been given powerful possibilities in our future? Isn’t that what the Good News of the Resurrection really means: even as sinners we are winners; eternal life is given us; our lives on earth have even greater potential? But too often we are nonplussed by the Easter story – it is a movie we have already seen, a nice story that fits well with an end to winter and the arrival of pastel colors.
Am I sounding a bit too cynical? Maybe so, but I am struck by how pedestrian we can make the resurrection of Jesus! The true litmus test for all of us regarding our appreciation of the life-changing quality of Jesus rising from the dead is to simply answer this question: will it call me to live differently today. The “A” answer is absolutely! If you want the “C” or “D” answer, just look around to many of the other Christians around you – we are the ones who have not allowed this awesome event to really change our lives. May you live the “A” answer today and everyday and be a better example to all of us of what a life-changing event Easter really is.
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