Monday, April 13, 2009
A Second Chance at Easter
And as they went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, "Rejoice!"
The resurrection of Jesus reminds us that God provides second chances.
When Jesus was crucified, it came as a shock to His followers. They just did not seem to understand that He would be crucified and rise again on the third day. When the Crucifixion actually took place, it shattered their faith.
But after His resurrection we see the risen Lord seeking out these discouraged, disheartened disciples to revive them, to reignite them.
How easily Jesus could have written them all off and said, "You didn't stand by Me in My greatest hour of need; now I am not going to stand by you in yours." But no--the Lord sought to restore them.
When Mary Magdalene went to the tomb of Jesus early in the morning, the angel told her that the Lord had risen. As she and the other Mary "went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, 'Rejoice!' " (Matthew 28:9). She found the living Lord, who restored her hope and purpose in life.
Thomas missed the meeting when Jesus had appeared to the other disciples, but He reappeared when Thomas was back with the group. How gracious of Jesus to condescend to the skepticism of one single man. It almost appears that He came to that meeting simply to restore Thomas.
Remember the two discouraged disciples on the Emmaus Road? As He spoke to them, their deadened hearts began to reignite. "And they said to one another, 'Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?' " (Luke 24:32). Jesus went out of His way to restore their hope.
Maybe you have doubts or fears today. The same Jesus who restored Mary, the disciples on the Emmaus Road, and the skeptical Thomas, will restore your faith. You too can discover that Jesus gives second chances.
Copyright © 2009 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000.
For more relevant and biblical teaching from Pastor Greg Laurie, go to www.harvest.org
and listen to Greg Laurie's daily broadcast on OnePlace.com.
Hope for Hurting Hearts
In times of tragedies and trials, certain things become evident:
This life will have its sorrows
God loves us
Jesus weeps in our times of pain
God can be glorified through human suffering
Hope for Hurting Hearts, Pastor Greg Laurie's new book, examines these truths, revealing God's love and care for us, and shows how we can find hope, even in the midst of the most unbearable pain and sorrow.
You can have your own copy of 'Hope for Hurting Hearts' by Greg Laurie in appreciation for your gift to Harvest Ministries this month.