Text: Luke 24:1-12
The headline for today reads: God has raised Jesus from the dead. He is alive. Hallelujah. Hallelujah.
What does it mean to rise up from a dead place? This is the question that woke me from a deep sleep in the early morning hours on Wednesday of this past week. I knew immediately it was an Easter question, and so I decided to let it linger in my head and heart. As I talked with people on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday I would ask them, “What does it mean to you to rise up from a dead place?” Several people looked at me as though I was crazy, but some responded thoughtfully. One person said, “I think it’s a shift in perspective – a new beginning.” Someone else reflected, “I think there has to be hope to rise up from a dead place.” Still another noted, “It’s a resurgence of life, that’s what resurrection means.”
My own answer to this question came yesterday morning. I opened my emails and read this:
Hey Nancy!!!! You cannot imagine my surprise when I googled you and I got your arrest record. I have thought about you so many times over the years, but didn’t know how to get in touch with you. After I saw your mug shot, I went on your church website – it sounds amazing. I would love to talk to you sometime. I’d love to hear about the last 32 years of your life and tell you about the last month of mine. I have two sons, 22 and 19. My youngest is gay. He is a freshman in college. We have suspected that he was gay, but decided not to say anything. We wanted him to tell us when he was ready. He told us last month. We have embraced him and let him know that we love him unconditionally. As he has been in church every time the doors have opened for most of his life, he is deeply spiritual, but having trouble understanding where he fits in. Our family feels uncomfortable worshiping at our conservative church and we’re confused about some things. Please call me if you have any free time next week. I’m praying for you and your ministry. I always knew God was going to use you in a mighty way! And by the way, where’s all that red hair?
Yes, before the gray, my hair was red!