Friday night, Bay and I went to a Good Friday service. As a part of the evening, we watched & listened to the great message preached by S.M. Lockridge, It's Friday, but Sunday's Coming (if you'd like to follow that impactful three minute soliloquy, you'll find it HERE).
I kept thinking, "It will, indeed, soon be Sunday, but Friday's coming again." Remember James-the-brother-of-Jesus said these words, "Count it all joy, my brothers and sisters, when you encounter various trials...(James 1:2)." The word "when" is important; he did not say "if." It's just a matter of time, when it could feel very much like Friday in my life. Confusing. Dark. Shaken-to-the-core fearful. Despairing. Difficult to breathe, let alone believe. I've experienced a number of Friday's. Friday always threatens to shut me up in a tomb of despair. Friday always threatens to suck the air out of my life. When Friday comes, again, I'll need to remember Sunday (gotta admit, just listening to the news feels like Friday, and as I read Facebook posts, some of you are there right now!).
I frequently hear the phrase "resurrection power," spoken at Easter time. It was God's power that rolled that stone from the tomb; God's power that raised Christ from the dead. It was God's power that accomplished redemption.
So, it is resurrection power that I have been reflecting on this morning. The same Greek word for resurrection power (dynamis) was used by Jesus before He ascended to heaven, as He gathered His disciples together and said, "You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you...(Acts 1:8)." Jesus, reminded the Apostle Paul that even though he felt weak and ill-equipped, that same resurrection power would strengthen and equip him. Paul turned around and reminded Timothy that God didn't give him a spirit of fear, but of resurrection power and love and self-control.
Those promises are for me, too; and, honestly, I long to experience that same kind of resurrection power in my own life...especially during the Friday's of my life, but also at other times, like when I stand in front of a group of women (as I will this coming weekend) and re-present Jesus. The Apostle Paul prayed the same kind of prayer, asking that he might "know Jesus intimately and experience the power of His resurrection" - so I know it's a prayer I can pray. I also know it's a promise I can claim. I know I can do the impossible, because the impossible is made possible with that kind of power.
That is good news...of GREAT JOY!
(Ha! This is about JOY after all....)