And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21:1-5 (Italics mine)

 

Today is Easter. For Christians it’s the most glorious day of the year.

No, not the most exciting. We don’t have kids tiptoeing downstairs at dawn to see what Santa brought them. Or the most commercially successful—a few baskets, chocolate bunnies and eggs don’t even come close to that extravaganza called Christmas. Easter doesn’t even tell the most alluring story—recounting the betrayals and terrible suffering of Holy Week gives me a shudder every time.

But Easter brings us the best gift of all—new life, eternal life, our world new-made.

Eden, as God intended it.

We come here in tears and suffering. We often go out the same way. There are wonderful moments in between, to be sure, but they are all too quickly snatched away.

Not in the world we await.

Think about it. No pain. No death. No mourning or crying. No suffering. No good-byes. No accidents. No illness. No aging. Perfect communication—with God, with each other, with the creatures around us.

Joy and peace. Forever.

Peter, who lived the first Easter, calls this promise “a living hope” (1 Peter 1:3)—a hope which has sustained Jesus’ people for two thousand years.

It sustains me.

 “There will be a day,” sings Jeremy Camp,

“With no more tears, no more pain, no more fears.

There will be a day when the burdens of this place

Will be no more

We’ll see Jesus, face to face.”

That is the glory of Easter.

“Christ is risen!” His people shout. “Christ is risen, indeed!”

Hallelujah.

Published in “Bozeman Daily Chronicle,” April 17, 2022.