Monday, March 30, 2015

There Has Never Been an Easter Sunday without a Good Friday First

Have you ever struggled in life and wondered “Why is this happening to me? How long do I have to suffer for? Why won’t God just do something about this?” I know I sure have, and it’s amazing that despite my belief and trust in God, I can’t help but allow my doubts to creep in and I sometimes begin to paint a bleak and dismal future in my mind. Yet, if I when I hold on with faith just a little bit longer, I have almost always found the “sun through the dark clouds” in the situation that seemed at some points improbable and the obstacles seemed impassable.

Now, we know that God is both the “author and perfector” (see Hebrews 12:2), so He clearly has a plan for both trials, temptations and tribulations in our life. And whether “He wills or He allows” struggles in our lives, He has offered us His Son, not only as Our Savior, but also as a reminder of the importance of faith and continuing to believe even when it seems so dark and hope seems so bleak. 

For a Biblical reference of this truth, look no further than the story of Easter. For Christians, Easter Sunday is a time of great celebration, renewal and restored faith. However, there has never been an Easter Sunday without a Good Friday first. In Biblical times, just a third day prior, Christ in flesh died on a cross with no “magic change” or “God just fix this for me type of intervention”.  In many ways that is how our lives work: we face great trials and struggle, and often times we face way more pain, suffering and adversity than we ever imagined we would. Yet, if we choose to give up and stop believing, we would almost certainly miss the personalized miracles and blessings that God had in store for us. In other words, “if we stop believing on Saturday, we will never realize the full glory of Easter Sunday”.

As a Christian therapist, I have personally witnessed countless tales of people’s suffering and struggles, yet I am never ceased to be amazed at the glorious transformation of character and faith that happens when people are able to “not grow weary or lose heart” (see Hebrews 12:3). I hope and pray that you too will “bear your cross” (see Matthew 16:24-26) when called to, so despite the conflict, trial and tribulation, you are able to find growth in your character, solace in your heart and a life renewed in Christ.