Monday, March 28, 2016

The Hope of Easter

Happy Easter to all!  It seems like each year Easter means a little something different to me in my life.  Of course, it will ALWAYS be about Jesus and my salvation because of Him, but this year, the specific meaning to my life seems a little different.  I have had to learn more and more over the past couple of years that trusting in my plans was NEVER going to work.  As a person who likes to be in control, this has not been an easy road for me.  I would like to say that as I have become stronger in my faith that I have been able to have peace about everything and just trust that God has my plans mapped out and I can ride along without questioning.  This is a skill I have not yet mastered...but I am getting there!

As I sat in church yesterday morning, our associate pastor was giving the sermon because our pastor was home with his wife who will likely go home to be with her Lord soon.  Just thinking about the strength they have all had through this brought me to tears, as he read a post from them about their peace with the situation.  It's an incredible faith that can praise God an glorify him through a time like this.  So overwhelming to me to hear this as I think about things in my life that I worry about.  WHY oh WHY do I worry???  If He can raise Jesus from the dead, then is there anything in my life that He cannot handle?  I seriously doubt it.  He tells us from that very resurrection day to not worry, and to have peace, why is it so hard to do that?  I can tell you from my experience that far better things have come into and out of my life when I trust in His plan instead of mine.  I can't figure out why it's so hard to trust with all of my heart when I know in my head that His plan always outdoes mine!

In the sermon this morning, he said, "Peace is resting in God's sovereignty"....Resting....doesn't that sound great?  I think that for years I have run myself ragged with trying to be in control when all He wanted was for me to rest, and trust, and to give me amazing peace.  In the past year or two, life has been turned upside down, but amazingly I have more peace in my life that ever before.  Logically, that makes no sense at all.  But, when I look at my faith, it makes total sense.  I have FINALLY learned how to give things up, and how to truly have peace, and how to really rest with Him, and as much as I thought I would hate giving up that control, it truly is freeing.  I feel so much lighter, I laugh more, I love more, and I smile more.  AMAZING.  I believe that is what He so longs for us to have and to understand.  He doesn't want to give us rules to follow, or tell us who/how to act or be.  He wants to give us such amazing freedom in Him, and when you accept it, it really is peace.  It doesn't mean that all will go as you think it should, or that you won't have crappy days, or that you won't yell at your kids when you should have been calm and loving....but it means that even with all of that, you have peace in your mind, you have joy in your heart, and you have love in your house.

Easter to me is such a time of great hope.  Hope for new beginnings, and hope that no matter what is happening now, there is a plan.  Do you think that God didn't know the third day was coming?  He obviously could have stopped Good Friday from ever existing...but he didn't.  He knew the plan.  He always knows the plan and always wants what is best for us.  I'm so thankful that He is better at knowing what is best for us so that I can have hope for the future.  Since I have learned to let Him have my worries (most of the time), I am able to have peace and trust in the plan that He has for me.  I believe that He knows and wants what is best for me, and I am going to choose every day to trust, have peace, and be joyful.  There is hope, always.  It is okay to believe that things even though sometimes things are hard, they are still good and that everything that happens is shaping me to make the best of what is coming in the future.

Life is good.  His plan is amazing.  There is hope, always