Look Up! – Week of April 18, 2022
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Can you imagine what it was like for those who walked to the tomb that Easter morning? I imagine the grief they were wrestling with. I think about the questions that may have been rolling around in their minds. I think of Mary, so overwhelmed with sadness that she didn’t even realize that it was Jesus, risen from the grave, talking with her. And then, as he spoke her name, everything changed. Imagine her face as she looked up into the eyes of her Savior. I cannot fully comprehend that moment.
Aren’t we often so much like Mary, the Mary walking to the tomb? We can be so focused on the path in front of us, the tasks before us, the weight of our sins and a sinful world. We so often go through days with our heads down, literally and figuratively. We struggle to focus during worship, during devotions, during prayer or Bible study. Our minds wander to those earthly things that so easily distract us.
We just celebrated the journey of Holy Week from Jesus’ triumphant ride into Jerusalem, the Lord’s Supper, the Garden of Gethsemane, the trial, the suffering Savior on the cross, and finally the inexpressible joy of the empty tomb. We left those Easter services with hearts full of joy and peace rejoicing over the Risen Savior. We celebrated with family and friends. And then comes Monday.
Our verses today remind us to keep our hearts on things above, on Christ. Like Mary, look up at our Savior Jesus. Remind yourself and those around you that Easter isn’t a day, but the message of the Risen Savior is for every day. Because of what Jesus has done for us, each day we can face the challenges of our life on earth with a joy and peace that comes from confidence in the promises kept by our faithful God. Set your mind on things above, on what God has done in love through Jesus. As you walk through each day, let these realities empower your life, rejoicing that heaven is yours. He is risen! He is risen, indeed!
Dear Jesus, these words are full of the joy of Easter. Help me to keep that joy not just on Easter, but every day.
He lives, all glory to his name!
He lives, my Jesus, still the same.
Oh, the sweet joy this sentence gives:
I know that my Redeemer lives!
CW 21 441:8