The disciples weren`t expecting Jesus to rise again. They had given up hope. All their hopes and dreams for Jesus were buried in a tomb. The resurrection changed all that. When Jesus came back to them, he was different. He didn`t live with them anymore in the same way. He came and went. They could touch him and he could eat, but there was something different about his body. They didn`t always recognize him, even when they spoke with him.
Because of Easter, we all hope for resurrection. We know that when we die, God will bring us into a new life. We don`t know what that life will be like…it will probably be very different from anything we can imagine!
But God also brings new life to us in areas of our lives where we are dead. You know those parts. That part of you that cannot resist an addiction…no matter how you try. You have given up hope of ever being able to control that compulsion. Or maybe there`s a relationship that`s dead. You`ve nailed the coffin shut, and it`s Closure with a capital C. Or maybe it`s your relationship with God that seems dead. The early dreams you had of closeness to God seem unattainable, and you are resigned to living in a dark space, where once you hoped to walk in the light of God`s presence.
In all these dark places, God can bring new life in ways that will shock and surprise us. God can give you the courage to admit you have an addiction, and start a new life relying on the help of God, of counsellors, of family and friends. You may not recognize yourself, you could change that much. Maybe God will renew a relationship in a form you never expected. It might surprise you that something you thought was so dead could continue to bring good things into your life for years to come. Or maybe God will call you to a deeper spirituality through a difficult experience. You would never voluntarily choose to go through that experience, but in the end you see how valuable it was. Who knows how God can bring new life to you this year…
This week`s prayer: God of new life, put your new life in me.