As spring begins to burst around us we anticipate the bloom of new life again and Easter is just around the corner. The rhythm of life brings renewal of hope and optimism.
But just as surely as spring arrives, tragedy slams us back to reality. A young athlete scores a winning point and drops to the court in cardiac arrest and is gone. War continues around the globe and families dread a knock at their door with devastating news. The lab report reveals the dreaded diagnosis. Even as hope arrives the reality of life outside the garden reminds us that we are not home yet.
Often more troubling is our attempt to reconcile these paradoxes with our understanding of God. Unless we enter the Easter season with a deeper awareness of its reality, its mystery, we will live surface lives afraid to acknowledge the struggle. When we take time to consider in this season the broken heart of God and the suffering of the Savior we begin to grapple with a love defined by the cross.
Our suffering, in whatever form it takes, echoes the cost of redeeming our broken world to Him. God does not stand apart from our sorrows, our anxieties, our weeping hearts and disappointed dreams. “For we do not have a high priest incapable of sympathizing with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way just as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help. “ Hebrews 4:15-16.
Let us spend time this Easter season and discover in the Savior’s sacrifice His present mercy and grace. We desperately need this love to live “in between” the garden and glory. May our concept of love this Easter be reshaped to be defined by the cross.