Easter Hope

My aunt Susan died one week ago today. Her body was being ravaged by cancer, and it finally succumbed to this noxious disease. She was only 54 -- an age which seems very young indeed, seeing as she was my father's little sister.

We traveled to Kansas last week for the funeral. My heart remains heavy. I'm sad for my Dad, for Susan's husband, for her two kids -- both of whom are planning a wedding in the next 12 months. At times like these, our paths can seem so very dark.

But today of all days, I am reminded -- The Light shines brilliantly in the midnight of the soul.

Hebrews 10:23 says, "Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful." The Message paraphrases, "Let's keep a firm grip on the promises that keep us going. He always keeps His word."

I love that last line. "He always keeps His word." And what has the Eternal God promised? That there is a place where we will see Susan's face again. That someday, death and disease will be no more. That Jesus' return from the grave -- which we celebrate today -- is our hope.

I was struck last week by the dichotomy of a funeral in the spring. It's an oxymoron, really. We were grieving the end of Susan's earthly years even as God breathed new life into the nature of the Kansas countryside around us. We stood around a cold and barren grave, while the grass glowed with vitality. We wore black; the flowers wore color. Our eyes clouded with tears; the sun sparkled with renewed vigor.

But the longer I reflected, the more it started to make sense to me. For believers in Jesus, death doesn't have any more power over us than winter has over the earth. It may reign for a while, with an icy grip and a bitter wind. But in the end, spring always wins. Always.

And that is the hope of Easter.


  1. amen and amen. Thanks for the dose of hope, Kel. Love you!

  2. And that my friend is part of the joy of having life in Christ. We are not hopeless and fearful. We are confident in the promises of God - our God who has never broken his word.

    And the next time you swing through KS, look me up (if it's convenient). I'll stuff you with good pie and coffee and make you want to come back again soon...

    Blessings to you and your family.

  3. Yes, for believers, death is not the end...it is the beginning. Still, we miss those that we loved who are gone. This is a great post! I am here by way of....oh geesh-I can't remember...but read you are a new blogger...wanted to stop by and say "HI! and Welcome!"

    so glad I did.


  4. Found your blog from Baby Bangs...

    The crucifixion Friday is so bleak until we remember Sunday is coming!

    So sorry for your loss :(

  5. I'm so sorry about your aunt. This makes me think of that Seasons song by Nicole Nordeman. It makes me cry every time.

  6. Thank you for writing this - such a lovely reminder of Life triumphing over death. Christ is risen, indeed.

    (I found your blog through the carnival at Homemaking through the Church Year. I'm glad you submitted your post!)