Prepare Your Hearts for Easter
Easter really sneaks up on you. One day it's Christmas, you're opening presents, hanging out with family, having a great time. Then you ring in the New Year, new projects, resolutions, opportunity to reboot. You cruise through February, minding your own business. Next thing you know, Easter knocks you upside the head. Some advance warning would be nice.
Christmas gets a lot of attention. There's the build-up months in advance; shopping, decorations, food, presents. Everyone gets into the act, whether they celebrate the birth of God incarnate, Jesus Christ or see it as a secular holiday. But Easter is different. Easter catches you by surprise and most people don't know what to do with it. We don't decorate for it, we
might buy Easter baskets for the kids, but overall, it just shows up, like an uninvited guest. What should we do with it? I have an opinion. Rather than being caught off guard, everyone should take some time to seriously consider the true meaning of Easter and prepare their hearts to savor its significance.
God gave plenty of lead time in the past, telling people thousands of years beforehand that the Messiah would come. Some heeded the message, some rejected it. But time waits for no man. "The sands of time are sinking" as Samuel Rutherford put it. The Scriptures tell us "...when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son...to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons" (Galatians 4:4). Basically, that means God prepared all of history for the particular point in time that Jesus would come into the world "to save sinners" (1 Timothy 1:15, a trustworthy saying deserving of full acceptance).
If this is the case, and God says it is, we should take notice and not just let the day go by without as much as an obligatory nod. We should wake up and take stock of our lives and figure out where we stand with God. I like how the Apostle Paul said it, "For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one died for all, therefore all have died; and
he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised."
I am not afraid of any man's opinions about these words because they are true. They are not mine. If it were really only a matter of my opinion, it wouldn't be worth the paper this is printed on (or the iPhone you are reading this off of). This is God's opinion and it counts no matter what we have to say about it. A day is coming when all these things will be evident. A time, as Joseph Addison (1672-1719) put it, "when we shall all of us be contemporaries, and make our appearance together".