I’m the gal who likes to read the last page of the book. I like to know the ending before I commit to reading the entire story. I enjoy looking up spoilers while watching a movie. I hate suspense; I just want to know if I’m going to like the ending or not. I’m happy to go through all the twists and turns of the story, as long as I know it has a good outcome. You follow the story totally differently when you know how the story ends.
Think back to the night Jesus was crucified; we know what happened. We know that He rose from the dead three days later. But as it all played out, the disciples didn’t know how the story would end. Peter was so scared of what was transpiring that he denied Jesus three times in the hours leading up to His death. All the other disciples fled, putting distance between them and Jesus in His hour of need. Jesus’ followers didn’t know how the story would end, and they were scared out of their minds!
They didn’t know that three days after that horrible, gruesome death, Jesus would rise from the dead in the single, most defining, glorious event in the history of the world! But when it happened, it was such a shocker to them that they never stopped talking about it. It literally never got old for them. They lived and died by the truth of that story!
As you go through the Easter season this year, try to imagine it as the disciples experienced it. Let your heart fall in the horrible news that Jesus was captured and dragged off to be tried. Feel the fear and horror as He is sentenced to death and marched through the streets, bloody and broken. Weep and hurt as He cries out in the pain and anguish of crucifixion. And let your whole world and hope fall apart as He dies in agony. Just for a moment, experience it as if you didn’t know the end of the story.
And then hopefully you will experience the end of the story with a measure of the same awe, joy, and wonder the disciples had when they discovered that He had risen! Try to bring fresh eyes to this familiar story, because it’s the story that matters the most. It’s the story that changed the trajectory of mankind. It’s not just hope, it’s hope fulfilled!