He’s Alive!!! Really???

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The gates and doors were barred
And all the windows fastened down
I spent the night in sleeplessness
And rose at every sound
Half in hope of sorrow
And half in fear the day
Would find the soldiers breakin’ through
To drag us all away

And just before the sunrise
I heard something at the wall
The gate began to rattle
And a voice began to call
I hurried to the window
Looked down into the street
Expecting swords and torches
And the sound of soldiers’ feet

But there was no one there but Mary
So I went down to let her in
John stood there beside me
As she told me where she’d been
She said they’ve moved Him in the night
And none of us know where
The stone’s been rolled away
And now His body isn’t there

We both ran towards the garden
Then John ran on ahead
We found the stone and empty tomb
Just the way that Mary said
But the winding sheet they wrapped Him in
Was just an empty shell
And how or where they’d taken Him
Was more than I could tell

Oh something strange had happened there
Just what I did not know
John believed a miracle
But I just turned to go
Circumstance and speculation
Couldn’t lift me very high
‘Cause I’d seen them crucify Him
Then I saw Him die

Back inside the house again
The guilt and anguish came
Everything I’d promised Him
Just added to my shame
When at last it came to choices
I denied I knew His name
And even if He was alive
It wouldn’t be the same

But suddenly the air was filled
With a strange and sweet perfume
Light that came from everywhere
Drove shadows from the room
And Jesus stood before me
With His arms held open wide
And I fell down on my knees
And I just clung to Him and cried

Then He raised me to my feet
And as I looked into His eyes
The love was shining out from Him
Like sunlight from the skies
Guilt in my confusion
Disappeared in sweet release
And every fear I ever had
Just melted into peace

He’s alive yes He’s alive
Yes He’s alive and I’m forgiven
Heaven’s gates are open wide
He’s alive yes He’s alive
Oh He’s alive and I’m forgiven
Heaven’s gates are open wide
He’s alive He’s alive
Hallelujah He’s alive
He’s alive and I’m forgiven
Heaven’s gates are open wide
He’s alive He’s alive He’s alive
I believe it He’s alive
Sweet Jesus

(words and music by Dolly Parton)

He’s Alive!!!!

Really?  Is he?  How can we prove this to the world?  In what way do our lives reflect this?  It is so easy for us to celebrate Easter, with all the accompanying fanfare, the music, the bunnies and chicks and eggs and ham…..  We dress up in our best, go to church, and celebrate.  And then what happens on Monday?  We talk about how nice Easter was and go back to business as usual.

If Christ is alive as we proclaim he is, if Christ rose again from the grave to save us from our sins, to change our lives, then should our lives not reflect a profound change?  One that is visible to all with whom we come into contact?

If Jesus Christ is the very God we claim, come in the flesh of humanity, if He is the Lord “through Whom all things were made,” as we recite in the Nicene Creed, it is up to us to proclaim this with all that we are, with all that we do.   Think about those whom Jesus had following Him: sailors, insurgents, tax-farmers, prostitutes, widows, lepers, and, on occasion wealthy folks. Rulers, workers, and the dregs of society. Young and old.  Their lives were changed in such a drastic measure that they died for their faith.   Many of them left all that they had, the security of their homes, their jobs, their families, to follow Jesus.  Would you?  Our Christian brothers and sisters are under attack in the Mid East, in the Philippines, in Africa.  Many of them have died in order to proclaim their faith.  Would you do as much?  Would you die for Christ?

If then, the answer is yes, would you not LIVE for Christ?  You say to me, “Bishop Michael, how do you expect us to do that?”  The answer to that was given to us by our Lord, Himself:

“As I have loved you, love one another.” He lived out the ultimate example of what this means. Then he said, “No greater love hath any man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” Then He did just that. But it was not only to save us from our sins, though it was most assuredly that. It was the sign, the seal,  that proved He was Who He said He was and that His word was true.

If He really is risen, then we have an obligation one to another to serve our fellow man as He served us.  And we have an obligation to share this Good News with our fellow man. We have to make the blessings we have gained available to every human. And we have an obligation to show that there really is truth to the old song, “And they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. And they’ll know we are Christians by our love.”   We have an obligation or reflect Christ’s goodness, His holiness, in our lives.  By our speech, by our actions, by our very thoughts.

He is alive!  Let us allow Him to live anew through our lives, reflecting His love and His promise in all that we do, in all that we say, in all that we are.  He is alive!!!!!  Amen.

 

 

 

 

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One comment

  1. Chip Noon

    Best Easter homily ever! Thank you Bishop Myke! You have made this my best Easter ever as well.

    Chip _________________________________________ Charles A. Noon III 9 Littlehale Road Durham, NH 03824 603-866-1121 chip@csnoon.com

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