Reflect and Rejoice in the Resurrection
Luke 24:1-8 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “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 over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’” Then they remembered his words. NAS
We are guessing that you could use some good news. “HE IS RISEN!” That is the BEST news! Jesus paid it all, suffered all, and overcame death to open the door to eternal life for all who would repent and follow Him. He has ascended to heaven and is at the right hand of the Father interceding for us. Pause there for a moment and rejoice. Give thanks and glory to Jesus for ALL He has done and ALL He is doing.
Please let me encourage you to take time over these days to read the chapters of all four of the gospels, recounting the steps of Jesus from Thursday to Sunday. There are many details and emotions to pray through; pause and ponder them as you read, don’t rush through. Imagine the thoughts and emotions of His disciples, friends and followers, as these events played out. Rightly so, our focus is drawn to the events on Thursday, Friday and Sunday, but for a moment, imagine what Saturday may have felt like. Picture the loss, mourning, and confusion they felt! They had believed that He was the Son of God, but did not believe Him when He said He MUST die – and seemingly forgot that He said He would RISE.
In these days of this worldwide emergency and pandemic, have you caught yourself feeling some emotions that have surprised you? Have you had moments of despair and doubt? Have you been short-tempered, or felt that God has turned His back on you or the world? Have you, like the disciples, had moments of fear and disillusionment? Remember, all but two of the disciples scattered and hid away after Jesus was arrested, and then one of the two denied Him. Then Sunday came and EVERYTHING changed! The words, “He has risen” rolled off the angel’s lips and hope exploded in the women’s hearts as they REMEMBERED His words.
In these days and every day, we need to remember Jesus’ words, and let hope explode in our hearts. We need to abide in God’s Word, His love, and in Him, so that our emotions do not become a stumbling block. We cannot grow weary! We are WARRIORS! Prayer warriors who battle the enemy’s schemes and shame, interceding for the hurting, hopeless, and helpless. We armor up and take the sword, the Word of God, and fight back fear, doubt, and everything else that comes at you and against you. Rest and rejoice in Jesus. He has risen!
Please join us in prayer:
Lord Jesus, thank You for suffering for us, for taking the punishment of my sin and washing away my guilt and shame. Thank you for abundant and eternal life. I resolve to abide in Your Word and to live every day in the power of knowing You have risen, and that You reign.
Lenten and Lengthened Season of Prayer
Day 44: Crucified: Matthew 27: 28-31 They stripped Him and put a scarlet robe on Him. And after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand; and they knelt down before Him and mocked Him, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!" They spat on Him, and took the reed and began to beat Him on the head. After they had mocked Him, they took the scarlet robe off Him and put His own garments back on Him, and led Him away to crucify Him.
Day 45: Truly: Matthew 27: 54 Now the centurion, and those who were with him keeping guard over Jesus, when they saw the earthquake and the things that were happening, became very frightened and said, "Truly this was the Son of God!"
Read and pray through Matthew 27 and the other gospel accounts of the crucifixion today. Take time to imagine, pray, and thank Jesus for taking the wrath of your sin and the sin of all people so that we might be saved. Proclaim as the centurion did, “Truly He IS the Son of God!”
Day 46: Hear and Hope: Matthew 20:17-19 Now Jesus was going up to Jerusalem. On the way, he took the Twelve aside and said to them, “We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified. On the third day he will be raised to life!”
Have you lost hope? Have you forgotten the end of the story? Jesus rises and then He reigns forever! Encourage your heart in prayer today. Continue to speak His glory and the end of the story to the enemy who thought he had won when Jesus died and realized he was defeated when Jesus did RISE!
Day 47: He is Risen: Matthew 28:5-8 The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified. "He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. "Go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going ahead of you into Galilee, there you will see Him; behold, I have told you." And they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy and ran to report it to His disciples.
Reflect and rejoice in the resurrection as you resolve to continue to abide in Him.
Thank you for joining us in these forty-seven days preparing our hearts for Easter in a Lenten and lengthened time of prayer. We pray that you were blessed by these prayer prompts. Please know that you are in our prayers as we prepare for the National Day of Prayer on May 7th. We will begin posting information next week about our National Observance broadcast as well as suggestions on how to participate in the National Day of Prayer within the health and safety regulations currently in place. In the meantime, check out prayer guides and other helpful and stylish resources already available to promote and participate with us as we, “Pray God’s Glory Across the Earth.”
Serving Him with Gladness,