“How are you doing over there, Andrea?” A friend of my parents turns to me and asks. We are seated at a long table in a restaurant, surrounded by my parents and a handful of their friends. We’ve just come from a Good Friday service.
I smile and respond that I’m doing well.
“I’m just checking in, because I know motherhood can be lonely,” she says.
My toddler is happily sitting on his Nana’s lap at the opposite end of the table, placing crayons in their box and taking them out again. The adults around him are nodding their heads at one another, deep in conversation. My husband and his friend, both musicians, are sitting beside me chatting about the music from that morning’s service. Our 4 year old is playing a game with his Papa in the aisle. I am quietly watching everything, until the sound of her voice interrupts my stillness.
Her words ring true for me. It has been a lonely season, though one where my faith has grown stronger – from a deep slumber to wide awake. I have appreciated the time I’ve had at home to pursue my relationship with God. This slower season has allowed me the time and space to seek, but it has not been free of pain or challenge.
As we enter springtime I am reminded of why this season feels so important to me. I sense the heart of God in the beauty bursting forth all around me, and I know this renewal is not just for nature. It’s for us, too.
New life is for all of God’s creation.
It is not just the grass that withers, so do our spirits. It is not just the leaves that dry up and fall away, so can our hearts. Spring is a visible reminder that what is dead can be brought back to life. But here’s the thing – restoration can happen only through Jesus. We need the resurrection power that can be found only in Him.
He is the only one who can bring back to life those areas in our lives that are failing. Because He died and was brought back to life, He wants to do the same for us. His death was not the end, it was the great beginning. He is alive right now, and right now there is life offered to us in His hands. Life for whatever circumstance and broken state we find ourselves in. He holds the answer. He IS the answer.
“You don’t have to wait for the End. I am, right now, Resurrection and Life.” (John 11:25, The MSG)
In the Bible, the word translated as “resurrection” comes from the Greek a·naʹsta·sis, which means “raising up” or “standing up again.” A person who is resurrected is raised up from death and restored to life as the person he was before.
This does not just apply to our physical bodies. Jesus brings resurrection power to our souls: “That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16)
Are we lonely? Overwhelmed? Tired? Hurting? Stressed? Lost?
Jesus wants to place His hands on our lives – His hands that bore nails so that, today, we could be healed. He wants to help us stand again, with feet firmly planted. He longs to revive our hearts and reawaken our souls to His presence.
The loving voice of the Father is calling us, inviting us to know Him and to experience for ourselves the very power that raised Him from the dead (Philippians 3:10).
This power is here for us today. It is here for our minds and our spirits, for our marriages and our friendships, for our parenting, our hidden hopes and our deferred dreams.
Jesus can breathe life into all that is dead. And He will. If only we would run to Him with faith, drawing close to Him with boldness. Having hearts confident in Him, really believing that He is listening (1 John 5:14) and expecting Him to answer (James 1:5-6).
What do we need to hand over to Him? What has dried up that we have clung too tightly to, neglected for too long, or unsuccessfully tried to fix on our own, that we need to entrust to His perfect care?
He is the One who is making all things new. Our hearts will blossom only in Him. Our relationships will grow only because of Him. Our hopes and dreams will be fulfilled only with Him. All that is dead will remain dead, unless it is joined to Jesus – the Giver of life (John 15:5).
Let’s ask for life from the One who first spoke life into existence. Lets ask the One whose very breath is in our lungs, to resuscitate what is suffocating in our lives.
Let’s stop trying to do it on our own.
Let’s call on the only name that can bring true victory into our lives. Then let’s help others do the same.