What does it mean to be Easter people, to live on this side of the resurrection? One thing, for sure. We are now God’s hands and feet in the world – we are the ones entrusted with carrying out God’s mission.
That sounds both exciting and terrifying doesn’t it? After all, Jesus left us big shoes to fill and the needs around us are overwhelming.
But the good news is that throughout history, God has empowered and used imperfect people just like us to bring the good news to others.
As we hear the stories of some of those people this week, may we be empowered to be Easter people as well.next >
This is the message that we have heard from him and announce to you: “God is light and there is no darkness in him at all.” If we claim, “We have fellowship with him,” and live in the darkness, we are lying and do not act truthfully. But if we live in the light in the same way as he is in the light, we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from every sin. If we claim, “We don’t have any sin,” we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from everything we’ve done wrong. If we claim, “We have never sinned,” we make him a liar and his word is not in us.
1 John 1:5-10next >
It is not easy to live as Easter people. As much as we might wish otherwise, the resurrection of Jesus doesn’t eliminate our struggles in the world. No matter how hard we try, we still mess up. Today’s text reminds us that this is true for everyone, and that we need to own up to our sin. It seems easier to try to hide our shortcomings, but we rarely succeed – for our sin affects the community as well as our relationship to God. The good news of Easter is that if we confess our sin, God will forgive us and make us clean again. God will restore us to each other and to God.
As you enter into prayer this day, what shortcomings do you need to own up to? Be honest with God, and you will experience grace, forgiveness, and restoration.
Tracy Hartmannext >
God, today I want to be honest with myself and with you. I confess that I am a sinner who sometimes walks in darkness. Please forgive me, restore me, and help to walk in the light as you do. Thank you for loving me and reaching out to me. Amen.next >
He has told you, human one, what is good and what the Lord requires from you: to do justice, embrace faithful love, and walk humbly with your God.
Go and be Easter people.
Tracy Hartman serves on the faculty of Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond in Richmond VA where she teaches preaching and directs the seminary’s internship program. She also enjoys preaching and teaching throughout the mid-Atlantic region. Tracy and her husband Jay are the parents of two grown children. Tracy enjoys traveling and all kinds of fiber arts.
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