The Hope of Daybreak: An Easter Meditation

Darkness came with a bite of fruit. It traveled on to the murder of a brother, the stealing of a brother’s birthright, and the selling of a brother as a slave. The darkness was there when a king, a man after God’s own heart, committed adultery and murder. It’s always been there hovering over our heads, staining our hands, and nipping at our heels. It’s the shadow that follows us when we do good and bad.

It’s fitting then that the Light of the World had to experience the full breadth of darkness. The darkness of misunderstanding, of mocking, of sickness and fatigue. The darkness of manipulation, betrayal, and abuse. The darkness of abandonment and denial. And finally, “when the sixth hour had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, ‘Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?’ which means, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’” (Mark 15:33-34). Jesus experienced a darkness we never have: the full wrath of God for the sins of the world.

As his body lay limp and lifeless, Jesus was then laid in a tomb. He experienced the darkness of the grave. The cold, the damp, closed up, shut in, and trapped in the void. Jesus can feel our pain, he can feel our darkness. He knows our sadness, our burdens, our wounds. Until we’ve walked through the depth of night, we can’t understand how glorious it is to be bathed in the white light of day.

A wind came up out of the sea,

And said, “O mists, make room for me.”

It hailed the ships, and cried, “Sail on,

Ye mariners, the night is gone.”

And hurried landward far away,

Crying, “Awake! it is the day.”

When the sun rose on that third day after Jesus’ death, it ushered in the hope of resurrection. The light of life could not stay in darkness; he vanquished it. It was like every other day, but so unlike every other day. Every sunrise gives us new hope and mercies for each day–a new start, a new beginning. The rays piercing through the horizon are a sign of victory: darkness is not permanent; the light of the sun has not left us forever. This was like the sunrise of the first Easter Sunday, and yet, it was more. The sunrise on this day was a testament of the divinity of Jesus and his power over eternal death.

It said unto the forest, “Shout!

Hang all your leafy banners out!”

It touched the wood-bird’s folded wing,

And said, “O bird, awake and sing.”

And o’er the farms, “O chanticleer,

Your clarion blow; the day is near.”

It whispered to the fields of corn,

“Bow down, and hail the coming morn.”

The physical reality of the hope in a sunrise is now a spiritual reality in the person of Jesus Christ. We know for sure that God has power over darkness. No pit is too deep, no grave too wide, no night too dark. Like David said, “If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!” (Ps.139:8b) And he continues, “If I say, ‘Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,’ even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you” (Ps.139:11-12).

It shouted through the belfry-tower,

“Awake, O bell! proclaim the hour.”

It crossed the churchyard with a sigh,

And said, “Not yet! in quiet lie.”

Daybreak, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

And yet we wait. We wait to see the full revelation of these resurrection truths. Though our souls will be with him, our bodies have yet to be raised as his. But at that final daybreak, that last sunrise of hope, our bodies will escape the cold, damp darkness of earth forever and be raised to life and power. Not yet. But Christ’s resurrection tells us the sun will come back. Of this, we can be certain.


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When I Can’t Go On, Show Me Your Glory

I was in the shower, shedding tears of desperation. As the water poured over me, I cried out to God to give me a special kind of love for my husband that I couldn’t produce on my own. “God, please help me. I can’t do this. I can’t. Give me the love I don’t have.” At the time, my husband and I were going through the darkest season of our marriage. I was deeply wounded. And in my hurt I was laid low. I saw my need. I saw the depravity of my human impulses, which was to hate the one who caused my pain. My impulses were not like Christ’s, and this was good for me to acknowledge.

I spent a lot of time during that season letting myself grieve and feel the emotional pain, but I knew in order to not grow bitter and be able to move on I would need more than inner strength—I had none. I needed God’s presence to go on. I needed the power of Christ. His love. His strength. I found much consolation in the Word and prayer.

God met me and was with me. He touched me with the power of His Word and His Spirit. I couldn’t go on without Him, just like Moses knew he and God’s people could not continue their journey without the presence of God. During that dark night of my soul, I would repeat to myself what Moses said in Exodus 33:18: “Show me your glory.” I needed to see His glory in order to have hope for the future.

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Missional Motherhood Study: Week 2

Today we had our second mom’s meet-up to discus session 2 of Gloria Furman’s missional motherhood. In this video Gloria gave us a sweeping synopsis of the gospel story intertwined throughout the entire Bible. She presents us with the “big story” of scripture and asks us how it fits into our smaller stories of everyday mothering.

The biggest takeaway from our discussion today was the promise of hope we have in Christ. His death, burial, and resurrection gives us a present and future hope in him alone. We see hope in Adam naming Eve “the mother of all living“, the hope of rescue and redemption in the Old Testament as every story points to Jesus, and then the fulfillment of hope in the New Testament and beyond. This hope is not grounded in ourselves and our efforts or the performance of our children; it is grounded in the hope of Christ’s resurrection. Even if our day does not go as planned, we know that ultimately all things will go well (and as planned) for God’s children in the end.

Leave me a comment with your thoughts after you watch the video.