Have you ever lost someone you cared about? Do you remember waking up that first morning after they were gone?
Imagine what it must have been like for Jesus’s followers on the day after his death. For three years, Jesus healed people, performed miracles, promised that the kingdom of God was near, and then they just watched him suffer and die. In addition to grieving, Jesus followers were fearful because the men who killed Jesus were looking for them too. The people who were closest to Jesus found themselves in hiding, scared, mourning, with no idea what to do next. Hope for a better life, or maybe even life itself, was gone.
If only they had known what was going to happen the next morning… but they didn’t.
Thanks to Luke, who set out to write an orderly account of Jesus’s life, we have the beauty of knowing exactly what happened next, from the women who found an empty tomb to Jesus appearing to his disciples and then ascending into heaven in front of them. We have the benefit of numerous eyewitness testimonies of Jesus walking around alive after dying on a cross.
But on Saturday morning, none of that had happened yet. The only thing Jesus’s followers knew was that the hope of the world was just nailed to a cross and it was over.
Have you ever experienced hopelessness? Maybe you feel like that now with what’s going on in the world or in your life. But what if the current chapter isn’t the final chapter? How would you approach your relationships, work, and society if you had hope that the future could be better than it currently is? With Jesus there is hope—because one Sunday morning years ago, he walked out of a tomb and conquered death for eternity.
Do you need a dose of hope right now? Is there someone you can connect with, to walk with you through a tough time? Whether it’s a friend, counselor, small group member, or someone in your family, reach out and let them know your situation. And in whatever season you find yourself, know this: you are always loved and you are not alone.
Today is here… for now. And today might be rough. But tomorrow is coming.
“A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” – John 16:32–33