In my neck of the woods, we are just starting to see the bare ground. Finally, after 5 months, the snow is starting to recede its dominion over the land and allow the earth to thaw from it’s long winters nap. We still have some piles of snow here and there but, – IT’S SPRING!
It is always such a relief when the first signs of spring show up. The robins are flitting around on the ground, the first green poke of a daffodil peeks up from the ground, the rivers and streams engorge with all of the melting snow and ice, and the air just starts to smell a little sweeter. It’s a time of awakening. A time of refreshing new life. A time of resurrection.
We also just had a pretty important holiday – Easter, or as I like to call it “Resurrection Day.” As a Christian, this is the most important holiday to me, it is the holiday in which my whole faith rests on. Without the resurrection of Christ, there is no Christianity. If Jesus didn’t get up from the grave, then we are just following the teachings of another dead guy…
But he did get up! He is alive!
God displayed His wonderful power and love, when He raised Jesus from the dead.
Jesus displayed his complete obedience and trust in God “by becoming obedient to death– even death on a cross” (Phillipians 2:8).
Without this, we are lost. Without this, we are dead. Without this, spring will never come for us. Without Jesus’ resurrection we are stuck in the cold, dead winter of life. As Paul writes to the Corinthians, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins” (1 Corinthians 15:17).
I feel like sometimes, even though Jesus does LIVE, and he is RESURRECTED, and NEW LIFE is upon us, we are so stubborn and we continue to stay in our old, dead, winter lives.
Everything is cold and harsh and there are no signs of life. Somewhere, for each and every one of us, there is a place that needs resurrection.
There is a place in our soul that needs life breathed back into it. There are places so dry and forgotten about, that spiders and cobwebs have set up camp and are taking over.
There are injuries and wounds from our past that may look healed from the surface, but underneath they are still sore with bitterness and unforgiveness.
Even though Jesus has brought new life all around us, we refuse to acknowledge it. We continue to live as we always did.
We stumble around this life, like nothing has changed for us. We run around and try to fix everything ourselves. We worry, we obsess, we stress – about money, our health, our family, our house, our jobs as if this will alone will make it better.
Allow me to let you in on a secret – IT WON’T!
“Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life… But seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness” (Matt. 6:27,33).
Yes, we can make better decisions about our health, our jobs, our spending habits, etc. I am not discounting wisdom here, but we still need God and Jesus to help us through it. Jesus died so that we could have a NEW LIFE! “…just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” (Romans 6:4)
So, why don’t we walk in it?
I know that I fall into this trap – ALL THE TIME. Probably more than I really care to admit. We are so conditioned to expect bad things to happen, for the world to beat us down, to have to fix everything on our own, because to ask for help is a sign of weakness, right?
Guess what – God WANTS us to rely on Him.
Let me repeat that – God wants YOU, His child, His beloved child, to rely on Him.
Asking God for help is a sign of obedience. It is a sign of meekness and humility. Trusting in God and in what Jesus has done for us is a sign that spring is here. When we can open the door of our houses that we have shut ourselves in for the winter, and we can see and enjoy the new life that is just outside, we are taking the first step to living the way Jesus wants us to.
So let us stop living in the death of winter.
Let us take hold of this new life that was presented to us – Jesus said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10).
We don’t have to live as we have always done.
“That, however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:20-24).
What Paul is saying here is that we don’t have to live these lives of shame, regret, guilt, greed, or unworthiness. We were created in the image of God and created to be righteous and holy. When we accept Jesus as our Lord, we accept that new life.
I’m going to belabor this a little bit, because it is so important…
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
What a perfect correlation to winter/spring. The OLD (dead winter) is gone, the new (abundant spring) is here!
Now, don’t run off and try to do all of this yourself (I know that is my tendency), because you won’t be able to. God is the only one who can raise something from the dead.
He is the only one who can help you shed off the dead”ness” from your past and step into your new identity in Christ.
So talk to Him. Ask Him for help. Pour out your heart as if He were sitting right next to you. God is the only one who can help you bring abundance and vibrancy to your life. So open the door of your heart, step out, and take a deep, accepting breath of the new life that you have been given.