Easter Panic

Notes from the pastor



“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark
Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had
been removed from the tomb.  So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and the other disciples, the one whom Jesus loved and said to them,
‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know
Where they have laid him’”
– John:1-2

Dear Front Street Church,

It never ceases to amaze me at how candid the scriptures are when it comes to the telling of the resurrection story.  Whereas the Christmas story seems rehearsed and fine tuned for its theological purpose, the resurrection narratives are what you come to expect when something just happens out of the blue. They remind me of something that happened to me when our youngest daughter, Katie was only a toddler.  We were in a large department store shopping for clothes and Katie decided to play hide and seek among the crowded clothes racks.  One minute she was there and the next she was gone.  Fear seized me and I began darting around the store like a scared rabbit.  I was in a panic!  Of course I eventually found Miss Kate but only after exhausting most of my energy.  So when you picture Easter morning be sure to keep in mind this image of someone running panic stricken through a cemetery, dogging tombstones in an attempt to find someone who can explain what has happened.  Remember, the early church was just as surprised about Easter as was the rest of the world.

Something utterly unexpected and world shifting occurred out in that garden cemetery, and the first people to experience this event reacted by running all over the place in panic.  As an old saying of the French Foreign Legion goes, “When in doubt, gallop.”  And that’s what the early church did.  The very least you can say about the Easter event is that it increased the church’s velocity.  Now mind you, that does not mean it gave the church a sense of direction, only velocity.  The church’s velocity had yet to be tempered by the Holy Spirit’s guidance.  That would not happen until the day of Pentecost.  Maybe there is a lesson here for all of us.

Resurrection moments will cause panic for all of us, but if they are truly resurrection moments God’s Spirit will give us understanding and guidance.  May God truly surprise you this Easter season.

Still In One Peace, 

Pastor Ray Wittman
March 3, 2016






Last Published: April 15, 2016 2:43 PM
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