I AM… Alive

By Heather Templeton

 

“Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.” –Matthew 28:5-7

The son of God was DEAD.
Everything his disciples knew, everything they were… it was all crumbling to the ground around them.
If you really stop to think about that, it’s absolutely terrifying.
I can only imagine their struggle to face this harsh reality in those dark hours that followed the crucifixion.
The questions, the fear, the uncertainty of what was to come.
They had given their lives to follow Jesus, and He had surrendered His on a cross between two common thieves.
None of it made sense.
Would they be next to die by association?
Where would they go, and what would they do?
The joy, the purpose, the meaning they had felt mere hours ago seemed a distant memory as they attempted to wrap their heads around a Messiah who was no longer among the living.
No longer able to lead them. To teach them. To save them.

Oh, but Sunday morning came.
That third day.
He AROSE.
Victorious over the grave.
Alive and present.
Showing himself to his followers, his disciples, his family.
Instructing them to seek and save the lost.
Verse 17 of Matthew 28 states “When they saw him, they worshiped him—but some of them doubted.”
Wait, they did what?
They doubted?
This was JESUS.
He was standing right in front of them, holes in his hands, his feet, his side.
And they doubted?

I’ll admit, I’ve judged them in the past.
Seriously, guys. HE’S RIGHT THERE.
But aren’t we the same?
I’ve seen the Lord move in my life.
Undoubtedly, with all the certainty I possess.
I know He has led me, walked with me, comforted me, and saved me.
I’ve felt His peace.
I’ve experienced His love.
And I’ve rested in His grace when I’ve been so far from deserving that it’s not even funny.
So… why do I doubt?
When days grow hard, I wonder why He doesn’t intervene.
When I slip up again with the same sin that plagues my heart, I wonder if He’s just one step away from being totally fed up with me.
When I falter in my faith, and miss my devotions, and fall asleep before I pray… is He even listening when I come back?
Oh my friends.
He is.

The end of verse 20 concludes “And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
He is ALWAYS there.
Because he is ALIVE.
When struggles come, and faith falters, run to the God who gave everything to rise again and see your face.
Run to the God who held back nothing, so he could lavish his mercy and grace on his infinitely imperfect children.
When doubt rises up, remember this: He knew you before you were born. He knit you together in your mother’s womb. He was aware of every moment of your life before you took your first breath.
He knows you.
And He loves you.
He is alive today, waiting in anticipation for the day he can sound that trumpet and call his family HOME.
So run to Him. Love Him. Let Him love you.
He is alive.
Today and forevermore.

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