Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. (Colossians 3:1)
“Your whole life can change in an instant.” Usually, we hear that phrase applied to negative and tragic situations. And it’s true that a car accident, job loss, or doctor’s diagnosis can all change your whole life in an instant.
But not everything that changes your life in an instant is a bad thing. The instant a father and mother hear their new baby’s cries for the first time—their whole lives have changed in an instant…and for the better. The new life that just arrived in the delivery room has brought new life and a changed world for the whole family.
The new life that arrived at the empty tomb on Easter morning brought new life and a changed world for all who believe in Jesus. And we weren’t even there! We weren’t walking with the ladies that first Easter Sunday, carrying myrrh and spices. We didn’t duck our heads into the tomb with Peter and John only to find empty strips of linen and a lonely face cloth. We sure weren’t there when new life came to a lifeless body, and death suddenly lost its chill. We weren’t there. And yet Paul says to the Colossians and us, “You have been raised with Christ.”
How can this be? When the Holy Spirit works faith in a person’s heart, their whole life changes in an instant. Through faith, Jesus and his people become inexorably intertwined. He has led a perfect life in God’s sight. By faith, his followers receive that perfect life in God’s sight. He has conquered death. By faith, his followers will one day conquer death.
No, we weren’t there with the women to hear the angels’ message. We didn’t peer into the tomb with Peter and John. We don’t need to go back in time to be raised with Christ. Instead, Christ comes to us—to our hearts by faith and brings with him the power of his resurrection: Joy where there was only sadness. Hope where there was only despair. New life where there was only death. Look at the empty tomb and rejoice―everything changed in an instant!
Risen Savior, I rejoice in your resurrection and gladly embrace the hope you have brought me. Thank you for conquering death and sharing your triumph with me. Amen.