April 2010 Newsletter

...the men said to the women, "Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified, and on the third day be raised again.'" Then they remembered his words. —Luke 24:5b-8

Dear Friends in Christ,

Jesus' disciples were shocked and dismayed by their Lord's death on the cross. When they saw the world turning against their Master, many ran in fear, deserting the Lord in his hour of trial. Only a handful of women, a few of the men, were brave enough to keep vigil at the foot of the cross. When their Lord was laid in the tomb, Jesus' followers perceived that their hopes had been dashed, their dreams destroyed. The hours between Good Friday and Easter hung heavy with sorrow and tears, doubt and despair.

Yet, we have to ask -- Why? Why did they doubt? Why did they despair? Jesus had told them time and again that the Son of Man must suffer and be crucified and on the third day rise. Why didn't they remember? Why didn't they have hope? Why did it take an empty tomb, mysterious messengers, and the sight of the risen Lord, to convince them that all was not lost? Why did they doubt that their Lord's word was true, that God's will triumphs? If only the disciples had listened to Jesus, they could have saved themselves immeasurable guilt and pain. It's hard to imagine how they could have doubted, when all things came together just as Jesus had foretold.

However, before we judge too harshly our early Christian ancestors, we should take a good look at ourselves as well. How many of us are fearful of the evil of this world, doubting God's power to triumph over wickedness? How many of us are consumed with guilt, doubting the power of Christ to take away our sin? How many of us panic in the face of death, doubting the hope of the resurrection which is ours in Jesus Christ? Do we remember in all circumstances the words and deeds, the power and promises of Jesus? Do we remember and face the world, sin, death without fear?

This Easter may you remember what Christ has done for you in his life, death, and resurrection. May you remember and doubt no more, for - The Lord is risen! The Lord is risen indeed!

Yours in Christ,

Rev. Peggy Ann Sauerhoff