Ours the cross, the grave, the skies. (From Christ the Lord is Risen Today)
This was our last hymn in church today. The last verse of the last hymn. My words caught in my throat as images flashed through my head.
Images of a Savior broken, bruised and bleeding on a cross.
Images of James after his last breath.
Images of Jonathan, of Jay, of Danny, of Nicole, of Ashlyn, of Courtney, of Lydia, and of countless others at whose bedside I have sat as they have died.
Sitting at a bedside of death will make you hate the consequences of sin like none other. It is there where you realize why Jesus wept at Lazarus' tomb. It is there where you realize our utter helplessness to do anything in this world or the next that would save anyone. It is there where everything in you cries out that death is wrong and not what God intended for His children.
Images that are broken. Utterly broken. I know those images too well.
But the key reason that my words stopped, that my breath caught, that my eyes stung and tears streamed is because of the phrase, "Like Him we rise..." This is the image I do not know yet. It is the image to which everything of hoping in Christ in me strains to know. Now by faith, then by reality.
This is why Resurrection Sunday is so precious to me. Because I know that every hymn declares why I believe. Every Scripture proclaims why He came. Every preached word of truth reminds that because He is risen, because He has conquered death, because He lives today, I will too, no matter how physical death takes me.
And no matter how physical death took James, Jonathan, Jay, Danny, Nicole, Ashlyn, Courtney or Lydia. No matter. Those lives where broken image has left those of us behind reeling for the sight of death consequence, those lives will rise again in glorified reality for resurrection truth.
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies.
"Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him." Romans 6:8
"For as in Adam all die, so in Christ, all will be made alive." 1 Corinthians 15:22
We have hope because He is risen. He is risen, indeed.