recently, i’ve been very inspired and encouraged, and convicted about the cross and resurrection.
we talk about it in such small terms. Jesus wasn’t just saving us, as his people, but redeeming ALL CREATION. Beginning the supernatural work of bringing heaven to earth. I was talking with Jon the other day about our Easter series, Exhale, and we were leaning to this idea: Jesus is establishing us as heaven-bringers to earth. i really feel like we need to emphasize the BIG-ness of this. this isn’t just so our sins can be forgiven. that is only one thing that happened on the cross, and paul alone shares 7-8 different things that happened on the cross to help people grasp how important of an event that was for mankind.
i don’t know how this works and where it fits in the whole EXHALE series, except that without our exhale the plants wouldn’t have the CO2 that they need to give us back the oxygen. in essence, without us going out (being breathed out by God) and sharing this incredible story of hope and love (us exhaling God’s Spirit), our friends, communities, cities and the world will not be any better. it takes our participation for this world to see and believe there is HOPE, and His name is JESUS CHRIST.
God’s vision is not that a select few people that think the same way would make it to some other location, but that the entire world would be renewed/recreated so that it looks more and more like heaven (no war, no disease, no hatred, etc). And our task is to live in such a way that we can help make that happen. in light of the cross and resurrection, how can we be heaven-bringers to our world and how can we help shape our congregations to begin seeing that Christ didn’t just come for their individual self, but for everyone and everything?
i don’t know if your folks already hear that language and it would just be old hat, but i think there’s going to be plenty of people on easter sunday, and plenty of churches saying, that Christ came so they could have “personal relationship,” and while that may be true, Christ came for even more!