Sunday, March 27, 2016

RUN TO JESUS

Today is Easter.
Today is the day we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection.
Today is the day we are reminded that we have hope, we have purpose, and we are dearly loved.

The narrative of Peter and John is where I always find myself Easter weekend.
They are two of my favorite boys and I love their friendship to each other and with Jesus.

This morning, my Pastor shared one of my favorite examples of Jesus extending His undeserved grace.  I shared this story of Peter in detail here a few years ago and it still remains one of my most loved stories.

On this day of celebration, I read something that John wrote that always makes me smile. 
“Now on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb.  So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “they have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.”  So Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb.  Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.  And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths laying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb.  He saw the linen cloths lying there, and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus’ head, not laying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself.  Then the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that he must rise from the dead.  Then the disciples went back to their homes.”  {John 20:1-10}
John often refers to himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.”
I love that!
He was loved and called by Jesus and it became his identity.

After Mary Magdalene tells the boys the tomb was empty, they take off running.
John tells us that he and Peter were running together and then adds a detail that makes me smile.  He tells us, not once but twice, that ‘the other disciple’ outran Peter and reached the tomb first.  I imagine it being something that Alex Harmon would make sure was added to the story if he were the one telling it.

I can’t help but imagine these two friends in heaven today retelling this story and laughing that John made sure that everyone would know who was faster and who reached the tomb first.

I personally believe the added detail is there to remind us that John was young, but for whatever reason, it makes him so endearing to me. But make no mistake, John would want zero attention today.  He would want us to remember that Jesus is the resurrection and the life and it was God’s plan from the beginning to redeem us through His one and only Son.

A lot of us made time and space for Jesus today.
After all, it's Easter Sunday.
But what about tomorrow?  And the next day?

Just like John, the beloved disciple, you are loved and called by Jesus.
Does that define you?  Is your identity in Jesus and what He did for you or is it in yourself and your own accomplishments?

Tomorrow, the tomb will still be empty.
So follow John’s example and run to Jesus with everything you have.


God told them, "I've never quit loving you and I never will.
Expect love, love, and more love!"
{Jeremiah 31:3}

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