I have country sounds in my life now. And I love them. I hear roosters crowing and a billion birds chirping and I hear wind! Did you know that you can hear wind? Just on a regular day, when it’s not stormy? I never noticed that.
And, it’s Easter and we’ve got a swing in the yard now. And this morning my kids were already sugared up and saying cute things like, “Easter is about Jesus when he ros-ed from the deck!”
So, I stole away to the front porch swing in the country with the sounds and opened my Bible to the end of Matthew to read about the resurrection. I was expecting a sweet moment in a sweet setting — singing birds and an empty tomb.
And I read the familiar words…”He is not here, for He has risen…”
Then my eyes drifted down to the less familiar study notes. And I read “…Jesus now lives as the faithful companion, master, and Lord of those who respond to his great commission…”*
And immediately, I heard the enemy say, louder than the roosters and the wind, “You’re not responding enough…what are you doing for Jesus, anyway? Remember all the awful things you said and did this week? Remember how many times you loved your inbox more than the Bible? I do. I remember. Let’s think about all those times, now. Also, in case you’re not sure — you’re the worst.”
And I believed it for a second. But, I’ve heard that sound before, so I said, “I feel like I believe you, but I know you’re wrong…” and I shut my Bible and whispered, “Jesus…help me remember. Help me remember the truth.”
BUT, instead of the voice of Jesus or the whisper of the wind, I heard another sound. I heard my flesh boldly say, “Remember that time last week that you shared about Jesus in that place, and that time last year when you showed that person that truth and remember every day when you x, y, and z for your family? You’re doing awesome! You’re totally following Jesus! Killing it, actually! You’re the best!”
Another lie. A lie that’s easier to discount. 🙂
So I kept praying until the Holy Spirit spoke to me of the truth that puts hope in my heart and a smile on my face and keeps the insidious sounds at bay.
I belong to Jesus. Not because I’m good enough, but because He was. He was perfectly obedient. He loved others sacrificially. He defeated Satan. He kicked death in the teeth and redeemed my wimpy flesh, and shouts to me that nothing will separate me from His love.
I don’t, on my best days, serve Him well enough to be worthy of resurrection. And on my very worst days, there’s still future glory and an empty tomb.
Easter is the very best day because Jesus is the very best one and He says that I am His and He is mine.
He loves us so much that I have to tell you about it. And I don’t need points for telling you. Jesus earned all the points and He lets me enjoy the prize.
So, I ended my prayer there, when Jesus spoke up. When He reminded me what Easter is about. And I thanked Him for the bird sounds and the country life. And the days before country life when chips and queso were only a half a mile away. And I thanked Him for future happiness and pain-filled tomorrows, whatever they hold, because He is risen and He’ll be with me, and not a sound I can hear will make that not true.
Happy Easter 🙂
*ESV Study Bible