This Easter will be unlike any most of us have experienced in our lifetime. For those who are accustomed to large gatherings with egg hunts and activities in the park, there will be none. Churches won’t be festively observing this time with lively events for families and our communities. The celebration of our mutual redemption through Christ will not take place at a church building or large Easter dinner. For many of us, this is new and unsettling. However, there is something profound about the opportunity available to us this Easter. More so than any year prior we can reflect on the personal nature of the atonement Christ made through His sinless life, sacrificial death, and triumphant resurrection.
It can be easy to deflect our gaze from an intimate and pointed reparation of sins and instead look at it from a global perspective. By that I mean, we can cement our focus on Christ dying for every person who has ever lived. It becomes a spiritual number game. The importance of the 7 billion people in the world today plus every past generation that has come and every future generation that will come, is heavy. The importance of our individual lives, in our estimation, can be forgotten. Yes, He died for our neighbor, our cousin, that kid that used to pick his nose in kindergarten and chase me with his boogers. The whole grand “everyone”. However, we must acknowledge and own that He died for each of us, individually, as well.
Many times in my life the enemy has distorted that amazing truth. I have believed the lie that I was snuck into the all-encompassing act of restoration with God. The resulting question that lodged its way into my heart was whether Christ would have chosen to walk away if my salvation alone was on the line. It’s produced an unceasing struggle to earn a spot in this family of believers. At times, in frustration, I have rebelled; honestly thinking God never really wanted me anyway. Those lies have eaten away at the perfect freedom God intended in my life and maybe you have experienced that as well. However, God is restoring the truth. He draws us to Himself for a relationship made possible by salvation through Christ.
“No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.” John 6:44
I invite you to re-frame your view of The Resurrection this weekend. God died for you. You, personally. You, individually. Galatians 2:20 states, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Paul understands the gravity of this truth. He declares Christ loved him; Christ gave Himself for him. Simply lie in the glory of that knowledge. We will sin and fall short and make mistakes. Our stories may be hard and we may still be in the process of coping with our past. Knowing all of that ahead of time, God chose us. God wants us. He died for the opportunity to know and be in continual fellowship with you personally and individually.
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16
This Resurrection Sunday and onward celebrate the depths of God’s love for you. Tell yourself aloud, “Christ died for me personally!” As you text, call or reach out to those you would have spent this day with, remind them of this truth. Maybe you’ll do a few group texts or group chats during the day, but make it a point to remind yourself and those around you, that you are each handpicked by God.
“For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’ The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,” Romans 8:15-16