Not a very good student in high school, I was what you call an academic late bloomer. I would not do homework, readings, or even study very much. Perhaps you can relate. There were just too many friends, too many activities to engage in, so I would just wing it. You know, I would talk about things I did not know as if I did. As a scholastic pretender, when I would write book reports, I never read the books. My teachers would wisely say things like, “The majority of this is based on your own imagination rather than the text. I doubt you even read the book.” Eventually, I grew out of my low expectations, but for a season, I was simply satisfied with getting the gist, the vibe, or simply talking to someone that did the work.
It is one thing to approach a high school assignment that way. It is another thing to approach Easter that way. For some of us, we get the gist, the vibe and we have spoken to people that get Easter, but we do not really know what Easter is about. We do not know Jesus or what the resurrection is all about. Sure, we know about him, but we do not know him. Like Instagram followers or Facebook friends, you can know about God without knowing God. You can also know about godliness without knowing God. Easter is a massive exclamation point. Christianity stands on two historical realities: Jesus Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead!
“Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters, of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. It is this Good News that saves you if you continue to believe the message I told you—unless, of course, you believed something that was never true in the first place. I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said” (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
If you are discouraged, dissuaded, dissatisfied, let down, or even depressed, the resurrection of Jesus births hopes in your life! Resurrection hope does not mean you do not have problems. It means your problems do not have you. Resurrection hope does not mean you ignore a problem. It means you cannot ignore the solution. The resurrection of Jesus gives us hope!
Anne Lamott writes, “We are Easter Sunday people living in a Good Friday world.” Our faith often looks foolish for a few days. Then, we make a sprint to the empty tomb. On the Sunday morning before the sun was up, the Son was up! Some people affirm this only because they get the gist, the vibe, or have spoken to others. Our prayer, at Palm Beach Atlantic University, is that you would not only have this truth on your lips, but that it would be on your heart.
May you have a very special Easter weekend!
Bernie Cueto, Ph.D.
Palm Beach Atlantic University