Read: “You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead.” Acts 3:15
Consider: Easter is around the corner. I find it curious that on my 2018 calendar Easter and significant day’s leading up to Easter are actually sharing their days. I’ll give you a clue. You may have seen couples out for a romantic evening on Valentines with well placed ashes on their foreheads. And I’m wondering what angst may be displayed on Easter Sunday in the good humor of April Fools’ day. Also, in my family Good Friday is the same day as our youngest child’s 21st birthday. As I consider this I smile because it is just like Jesus to move into my calendar and my life and remind me that He is the author of my life and wants to be a part of it. He is the author of my life and wants me to trust Him, thank Him and tend to thirsty souls.
No matter what is on my calendar or going on around me, I want to trust that God is working. Acts 3:15 says, “You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead.” Now if I pull out from this verse only the words “You…but God”, I am reminded to not focus on myself and what I’ve done or on others and what they’ve done. But instead to focus on what God has done.
Have you had times in your life when circumstances were tough, but God brought tremendous strengthening and growth. Or perhaps the unimaginable happened and you still don’t understand, but God has given you peace and hope that He will bring beauty out of the ashes.
I was sitting in a small group discussion a few weeks ago listening as a mother and daughter shared about a time in their lives that was filled with hurt, pain and addiction. Their story captivated me and as I leaned in to hear more, the mother explained, “But God brought beauty out of the ashes.” The whole tone of their testimony expressed gratitude. I didn’t hear them taking credit and explaining how they had done this or that to fix their lives. Instead, I heard, “but God”. I heard quiet acknowledgement that God brought healing.
Last month, before moving from Florida to Texas, I went for a sunrise walk on the beach. As I was walking, I received a text from a dear friend with this “but God” reminder. “Thinking about you and praying for you both as you make this next journey in your life. For some reason the woman at the well popped into my head this morning as I was thinking about you both. You may have some thirsty souls waiting for you at the end of your trip. How awesome that God has entrusted you both with drawing the water from the eternal spring. I know this is what you brought us 28 years ago as both of you began your journey here.” My friend was good to challenge and remind me that God’s purpose for moving me is to remember to share Jesus with thirsty souls. Acknowledging “but God” moments and sharing them can ignite hope in the thirsty souls around us.
As Easter approaches remember “…..but God raised him from the dead”. Do you have a “but God” story to share? Who will you share it with? God raised the author of life from the dead and we can trust that He is working. We can thank Him when we see beauty come from ashes and we can remember to tend to the thirsty souls in our lives with the good news of Jesus.
Pray: Great and Mighty God we acknowledge that you can take whatever is going on in our lives and bring beauty from ashes. Thank you for raising Jesus from the dead and giving us a new life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.