Easter to me is a sunrise service on the beach.
As six hundred or so gather to worship Him, the ocean waves humming along with the voices, I realize so many are going through the motions.
It’s the first of punch on the attendance card of the the “twice-a-year” church goers.
God’s love is immense, never ending, never failing, but showing up twice a year for church doesn’t guarantee anything.
Except a chance to put our hearts before His very fiery flame.
Why do we give up on Jesus and the journey of following Him to the Father’s heart so easily?
I’m not sure… but we do.
It’s the battle of the human condition. Flesh waging war against the spirit.
Why do we limit God to what we are comfortable with doing and believing?
I want it all. All He has for me. Yes, it scares me some but He is love. And He is good.
Peter wanted all Jesus had for him too.
In John 13 when Jesus goes to wash the disciples feet, Peter refused. “No, Lord, you can’t…”
But Jesus said, “If you want to be a part of me, I have to wash your feet.”
So Peter jumps right in… “Then wash my head and hands too.”
Basically, “I want all of me to have a part with you.”
Little did he know his very heart would be tested within hours.
We know the story of Peter denying Jesus three times at the hour Jesus needed His friends the most.
After Jesus raises from the dead, he appears to the disciples and hundreds of others.
But Peter’s heart is still discouraged over Jesus’s death, over his own failure and denial of the God-Man with whom he’d walked for three years.
In John 21, Peter quits. “I”m going fishing.”
It’s over. The hope of Israel is dead. They killed the one Peter believed to be the Christ.
All hope was lost in Peter’s heart.
Fishing was his old life. His old occupation. He was going back to what he knew, what felt safe.
But the blessing was gone from Peter the fisherman.
After laboring all night with some of the other disciples, Peter netted nothing.
Then Jesus shows up, tells them to throw their nets on the other side and wahoo, they hauled in the mother load.
We need Jesus to show up to bear any fruit in our lives.
We also need to have hope in Him and follow His call.
Even when we want to quit and go back to “our old life” because what we thought was going to happen, to be, was not.
There’s no fruit in going back.
The only hope and fruit is in Jesus. When He shows up, our nets won’t be able to contain the blessing.
I don’t know what’s going on in your life this Easter, but forget what lies behind — good, bad, painful, hurtful, prosperous, whatever — and press on toward the upward call of God in Christ.
Make this Easter Sunday the first of many in which you gather with the Body of Christ to let Him was your feet.
Peter encountered Jesus that day in a way that would change him forever. He never went back to His old life.
That’s what this season of Resurrection is about.
Never going back.