Tuesday, April 11th
Devotional written by Pastor Brian Howard, Teaching Pastor
HE STILL MOVES STONES
To read today: John 20:1-10
Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.
When Mary approaches the tomb, she immediately sees something worthy of note. The stone has been removed from the entrance. This is worthy of note because the stone was large, heavy, and not easily moved. In many ways, the stone would have stood in her mind as a symbol that Jesus was dead, would remain dead, and nothing could be done about it. Nothing in Mary’s thinking and expectations would have prepared her for finding a rolled-away stone and an empty tomb. She does not know the whole story, but she knows something significant has occurred. As impossible as it would have seemed to her (and us), Jesus was no longer in the tomb.
The Easter story is the ultimate reminder that for God, nothing is impossible. The situation in your life, your family, or our world that seems so final is just a move of God away from changing entirely. I have seen this often in my lifetime, and I wonder if you can recognize any of these in your own story:
- I have seen relationships that I thought were over find reconciliation and healing.
- I have seen financial situations that I thought were catastrophic get resolved.
- I have seen terminal diagnoses that seemed so final but resulted in complete healing.
- I have seen estranged children reconcile with their parents.
- I have seen people who no one thought would come to Jesus be baptized.
Nothing – no stone or situation – is impossible for God!
Now, I know the question some may have: “But what about the situation that was never resolved?” I want to recognize the deep pain that this question holds and say that not every situation gets resolved on this side of glory. I do not want to give false hope that everything has a happy ending if you have enough faith. Neither the Bible nor my own experience of life in this fallen world allows me to believe that God will resolve everything if we just pray enough.
But, I can say with absolute confidence that the resurrection of Jesus is the ultimate proof that if “It’s not good, God’s not done.” The resurrection of Jesus, as we will explore later this week, is the down payment and first fruits of the New Creation God has promised. In that New Creation, we can be assured that everything will be resolved, made right, and redeemed. This is the blessed hope of the Christian church that Jesus will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and make all things new!
Reflection: Talk to God about the “immovable stones” in your life and ask Him to move in power!