Yesterday was Easter. The message at church was about how we have salvation through the cross and power for life through the empty tomb. The resurrection.
Every believer acknowledges that Christ's crucifixion saves our souls, but often we underestimate God's power to change our lives here on earth. More than anything, we limit God by imposing our own limits on what we're willing to do.
For the last six years I have really fancied myself as a person completely open to God's work and change in my life, but in the last few months I've come face to face with the truth - I severely limit God. I can love a complete stranger, but family terrifies me. I have been so hurt by certain people that I had simply deemed all family untrustworthy and kept them all at arm's length. For a time, this was necessary...but now it's just selfish preservation from what I fear might happen.
I've written about this sort of thing several times recently, but yesterday I was just so moved and overwhelmed by God's promises and faithfulness to come through if we'll just get out of his way.
These have long been favorite scriptures, but these different translations and emphasis really captured my attention.
Jesus said "I have come that you may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (till it overflows)." John 10:10
"I have strength for all things in Christ who empowers me. I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses inner strength into me." Philippians 4:13
"What is impossible with men is possible with God." Luke 18:27
"I have raised you up for this very purpose of displaying my power in you, so that my name may be proclaimed the whole world over." Romans 9:17
"For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power." 1 Corinthians 4:20
Because of God's dwelling within me, I have the power to do the most difficult things imaginable. For me, these most difficult things involve reconciling relationships that were once very painful.
On Easter Sunday, an empty tomb was found. Jesus had been resurrected.
Synonyms for resurrection include: renewal, resurgence, revival and rebirth.
Like my Lord Jesus' resurrection, my Heavenly Father wants to see a revival within my family.
I waited until Friday to invite my family over for an Easter celebration. It took time for me to get up the courage and get over my overwhelmingly selfish desires to be right rather than happy. But I did call, and they eagerly accepted my invitation.
Because God has been working so diligently on my heart...restoring me and empowering me to love people I previously did not even like, this happened.
I celebrated Easter with my family for the first time since I was a child.
We dined on hot dogs and chips - on paper plates - but this year goes down as the most memorable and joy-filled Easter ever.
God is giving new life to these relationships. And I am finding that all the "peace" that came with distance, pales in comparison to the love and happiness that surrounded us on Saturday.
I praise God that everything that is impossible with men is possible with Him!