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A Note from Pastor Bruce

What Difference Does Easter Make? Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabboni!” (which means, Teacher). Jesus said to her, “Stop clinging to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene came, announcing to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and that he had said these things to her. John 20:16-18 Throughout Lent we have been exploring the great questions you have asked about God and faith in life. One that arises from the reading above must be, “What on earth would it feel like to be in the midst of mourning the death of a friend close to your heart only to turn around and hear that friend call out your name?” And another, “How would it feel to expect to see your dear one lying dead in his tomb, but instead find it empty?” You had watched him die. Now he is alive?! I’m sure Mary (as well as Peter and John) would say that mere words can’t describe what took place that day at the empty tomb. Mary, one who loved much, because she had been forgiven much, had the honor to run to the Savior’s friends and exclaim, “I have seen the Lord!” What unspeakable joy! What victory over the darkness of death! This history lesson of Jesus’ conquering sin and death is amazing. It’s even more incredible for us, that the story reaches off the pages and affects you and me today. Jesus’ victory over the grave was not some showy gesture by a powerful God. He conquered death so that you and I can know resurrection power–right now, and ultimately in eternity. Physical death is imminent for us all. But “God demonstrates his own love for us in this that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord!” The great question is, what difference does this gift make in your life? What difference does Easter make? Let’s join Mary in wrestling with these questions even while celebrating and proclaiming that we have seen the Lord, he has called us by name. We are his own! Join us throughout Holy Week for some amazing opportunities to worship, to grow to experience God’s love so that we can experience God’s love and continue to grow to love like Christ! In Christ, Pastor Bruce


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