Honestly, I have been dreading Easter for weeks now. I knew I would miss Cora more than ever today. I knew it would make me sad to see all the other little girls in their pretty Easter dresses. I knew that I would wonder if Cora would have been toddling around looking for Easter eggs with her cousins. I knew that church would be hard. I knew that going to another family gathering without Cora would make my heart hurt.
Well here we are on Easter Sunday. My heart does hurt today and I miss my little girl. But I think that the days leading up to Easter were actually harder than today has been. We made it through another "first" without our Cora. One more little step.
I have been reading through a devotional book and was struck by something that I read recently. I thought about it again today as Joel and I were talking about how the meaning of Easter is so different for us this year:
"There is no tragedy in being ushered from this life to the next when that next life is spent in the presence of God. The only real tragedy is a life that ends without that hope. When a person rejects the free gift of eternal life God has offered through a relationship with his Son, that is a tragedy."
Don't get me wrong. That doesn't make the pain go away. That doesn't make me miss Cora any less. That doesn't make me stop wondering why God chose this path for our family. But, this Easter I have a new perspective. This Easter I have a new reason to rejoice in a LIVING King.
Without Jesus' death and resurrection I couldn't have this HOPE--my faith would be useless. Jesus conquered death once and for all. He did that for you and me, even though we don't deserve it. It is because of His resurrection that I know my Cora is in the presence of God. I can be confident, because I have trusted in Him, that one day I will meet my Savior and be with Cora again. I don't know how Joel and I could keep moving forward without this HOPE.
Today, though my heart is heavy, I am rejoicing in the KING!
Today I am thankful that Jesus has RISEN and CONQUERED THE GRAVE.
Today I am thankful that I serve a LIVING God.
I pray that you too are living with this same HOPE. It would be such a great tragedy to reject this gift of eternal life that Christ so freely offers us.
Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. The death he died he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.