“They found that the stone had been rolled away from the entrance. So they went in, but they didn’t find the body of the Lord Jesus.” –  Luke 24:2-3. 

What should Easter mean to you? I hope it is the reason you have hope at all. I believe there is no greater celebration. Through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ we are offered new life – full of  joy, hope and the certain assurance of our salvation. I have been a pastor a long time and a Christian even longer and I am still in awe of the Easter story. To me, Easter means everything.

Easter is more than just one Sunday. For me, the meaning of Easter is quite personal: whatever I have done (or left undone), whatever I have said (or left unsaid), whatever ways I am imperfect (in so many ways), there is nothing that can keep God from finding me, reaching out to me, loving and saving me. And I do mean nothing. Not even death. 

Easter is the reason I can say all of that with such certainty. Because death couldn’t contain God’s love from showing on that first Easter morning. Paul said it even better than I can. Here’s the Message version of it: (Romans 8:38-39:31-39) “So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us? And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God’s chosen? Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us—who was raised to life for us!—is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture: … I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.”

I hope you will remember every twist and turn in the Easter story. The long night in the garden. The trial and death conviction. The walk up the Via Dolorosa. And the climb up Golgotha to the nails and the agonizing death on the cross. And I hope you remember that Jesus died; Jesus rose; Jesus lives again and so can we.  That’s the guarantee of Easter. That’s why Easter means everything.

In conclusion, let me say that we love volunteers at Northstar. We love what volunteering means for the church and what it means for you. If you are interested in volunteering with us during our Easter services, I encourage you to talk to your campus pastor.

Discussion Question:

  1. What does Easter mean to you? 
  2. What difference does the reality of the resurrection make in your own life?
  3. What can we do to make Easter more meaningful this year? Do you have anybody in mind to invite to Easter services?