Have Faith...
An Easter Reflection on Hope
April, 2011 - Issue #78
When faced with adversity, it is easy to become discouraged and think that all hope is lost. Several years ago, when the Santa Clarita Valley was ravaged by wildfires, hope and expectations were at their lowest. As longtime residents of Santa Clarita viewed the devastation, it was easy to become discouraged and ask ourselves if our community would ever rebound to its former beauty. We have seen in these two years that it has.

Springtime, Passover and Easter have many of the same themes. During spring we are looking for the leaves to return to the trees, the grass to be a little greener, the trees to bud and the flowers to bloom. There is a renewed hope and vitality with the passing of a dreary winter. A person of faith is one that has an expectation that things are going to get better.

The Passover is a celebration of the exodus of the Jews from Egypt and that darkest night in Egypt when the firstborn sons died; the death angel passed over the homes where the Israelites were. The Jews were told to celebrate this feast every year in order to remember what the Lord had done for them in Egypt. Their faith was to be renewed as they recounted the magnificence of God year after year when this event is celebrated.

For Christians, Easter is a time when the depressed darkness of Good Friday was replaced with the excitement of an empty tomb. The disciples were extremely discouraged when their leader died and could not grasp the significance of what Jesus had promised would happen - until it actually did. Their depression from Friday evening became joy with the sight of the empty tomb and the risen Lord.

What is the significance of faith? It is an opportunity to believe that what you are currently experiencing will get better. It is important to live in a constant expectation that the purpose and plan of God will be manifested in our lives. You may not be able to currently grasp the future, but you live in the assurance that what God has for me will be mine. What He thinks about me is good and it is designed to bless my future and give me hope. The Psalmist asks himself this question in Psalm 43:5 - "Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul? Why are you crying the blues? Fix my eyes on God - soon I'll be praising again. He puts a smile on my face. He's my God. (The Message Translation) Our faith enables us to fix our eyes on someone who is greater than what I am going through that can change my circumstances.

While we are going through these circumstances it is often difficult to see the good, but on the other side of the midnight is the dawning of a new day. As we enter into spring and the joys of the coming months, live a life of expectation and hope. Decide to turn your focus to the good that can happen in your life. You will discover that your days will be brighter and your life will be richer when you do. We invite you worship at Santa Clarita Christian Fellowship and develop your life of faith.
Cornell H. Winston is the associate pastor for education ministries at Santa Clarita Christian Fellowship Church in Canyon Country; 298-8189
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