March 30, 2024

Today’s scripture and reflection

Loving and Gracious God, we offer praise and thanksgiving to You.

Just hours ago, we remembered the dark day of Jesus’ crucifixion. Our hearts were heavy as we reflected on the pain and suffering of our Lord. The agony of the cross He bore is unimaginable. And to think that He suffered, not for himself, but for all humanity. To call yesterday Good Friday seems to be a misnomer. The brutality of the day for Jesus was terrible but because His sacrifice for us provided a way of forgiveness and salvation for us, it is “good.”

We are saddened as we think of the Son of God suffering such pain and indignity. At the same time, we rejoice because we know that death does not have the last word. Good Friday reminds us of a dark day, but we look forward to tomorrow when we celebrate the fact that death does not have the last word. The reality of suffering, sadness, and sorrow gives way to the victory of the Empty Tomb.

The Old Testament writer reminds us that “the faithful love of the Lord hasn’t ended; certainly, God’s compassion isn’t through! They are renewed every morning. Great is God’s faithfulness.” When Jesus faced death, he told his followers that after three days, he would arise, and we know that His words were true. Death was not the victor. The grave could not hold him. Today, we offer praise and thanksgiving for that reality.

The words of the hymnwriter ring true as we stand on the eve of Easter Sunday. “I serve a Risen Savior. He’s in the world today. I know that He is risen whatever folks may say. I feel His hand of mercy. I hear His voice of cheer. And just the time I need Him, He’s always near! He lives! He lives! Christ Jesus lives today. He walks with me and talks with me along lives narrow way!”*

Regardless of what we face today, dear Lord, remind us that we are not alone. The Risen Christ is with us and will sustain us through anything that life may offer.

In the powerful and loving name of Jesus we pray. Amen!

*I Serve a Risen Savior by A.H. Ackley

Rev. Jamie Jenkins