Good morning, Lord Jesus. Open the eyes of my heart and the ears of my spirit, as I begin my day seeking Your face and embracing Your presence.  ... 

“Then they went out and ran from the tomb, for terror and bewilderment had seized them. And they said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.” (Mark 16:8)

Next to the sin of Adam and Eve which led expulsion of Adam from the Garden of Eden, the removal of God’s presence and Heaven from earth, and the very nature of creation changed and cursed by mans fall, the resurrection of Jesus was the most cataclysmic event in the history of the earth. And the women came face to face with this reality, and it terrified them.

This passages helps me truly understood the monstrous, cataclysmic and violent impact the resurrection of Jesus Christ had on and in creation, and its forever alteration of the mission of the church, and the practice of ministry is changed.  The whole focus of the church changes from how we can get to heaven to how can we get heaven here.  When my mind more fully shifted to an understanding that the ultimate goal of a Christian is not to go to heaven, but to be resurrected into new life in the new earth in the age to come, my practice of ministry changes along with that understanding.  I then minister with a fuller realization of the value of the earth and creation, that what I do today matters and has eternal significance.  That though I do not fully understand how, I know that every act of kindness and justice I do today on this earth today is helping usher in the new earth, and it will be somehow transformed and present in the age to come.  Creation is valuable and not just something to exploit today because as some say “this world is not my home” and it will have no significant value in the future. 

Jesus, let my understanding of eternal life support and flow into and out of my understanding of the resurrection and the kingdom of God.  In my ministry I cringe inside every time I hear someone lead into a discussion on the importance of eternal life with the question, “If you got hit by a bus today do you know where you would go?” Eternal life was never intended to be a carrot to impart guilt and shame onto someone into believing.  Jesus never used shame to convince anyone.  This view of eternal life also fails to fully grasp the full significance of eternal life.  In John 10:10 Jesus says, “I have come so that they may have life, and life abundantly.”  He did not mean at some future day when they die, but today.  

            So in my ministry of relationships, discipleship, teaching and performing the sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s Supper,  may I always emphasize the benefits, hope, and possibilities of eternal life that are available to us today in and through these acts.  May I also try to stress this daily by living a life that reflects one living into and embracing the abundant life Jesus has given me.

My family, I pray you understand and enter into the resurrection of Jesus and it’s cataclysmic effect on creation and on you, and you embrace the hope, benefits, and possibilities that are available to you today from this event. In Jesus’ name.  Please pray the same for me.  God bless you my friends!

Please share your reflections and prayers on my blog in the comment box below.

 

Gary Liederbach- Lead Follower

One Direction Community

Email: garyl@onedirection.community

Website:https://www.onedirection.community

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