First things first: The winner of last week’s giveaway (A copy of Mended: Restoring the Hearts of Mothers and Daughters by Blythe Daniel and Helen McIntosh) is…Summer Marrero! Thank you so much to everyone who participated. And now, on to this week’s post.
During my formative years, I lived at the end of a long caliche road in Elm Mott, Texas. You blink and you miss this little country town driving up Interstate 35 from Austin to Dallas. My rich friend, Deanna, lived about half way down the road. Her family owned a bigger plot of land, a golf cart, and a trampoline. They lived in the only house with more than one story and the road bore their last name. In my book, Deanna was rich.
One Easter Sunday I remember her telling me about the egg hunt they have every year. Her parents hid plastic eggs all over their property and all the kids and grandkids kept their eyes peeled for the gold one. All the pretty pastel eggs held candy and fun trinkets. Those were ok. But the gold one – it had $50 inside. The golden egg turned this hunt into a sport. It was the coveted prize.
On Good Friday, we remember that God loved us so much that He made a way for relationship with us – now and for eternity. Romans 3:23 NIV disputes the myth that we can ever be good enough to earn God’s love and mercy (“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”). Because we sin, our punishment is death. And not just the ceasing of life that we all experience here on this earth. An eternal death that is separation from God – here and forever. (Romans 6:23 NIV “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in[a]Christ Jesus our Lord.”) Jesus, who never sinned, took the punishment for all of us who have. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8 NIV He died on a cross, but death could not hold my King. Jesus rose from the dead, conquering sin and death for us, allowing us to be in relationship with the perfect Creator of the Universe. It’s too much. I don’t deserve it. We can’t earn it. And in His great love and mercy, we don’t have to try. Romans 10:9-10 NIV assures us, “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.”
“For from him and through him and for him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen.” Romans 11:36 NIV
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