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  • Laura Wilson

Life or Death?


This year, my birthday and Easter fell on the same day. Paul, Asher and I spent time together outside. I was taking photos of Asher, when I noticed something striking. There was a lot of death around us left behind from winter: dead leaves, barren trees, brown grass. In the middle of all of this, I saw small, purple flowers beginning to bloom-- a sign of something new, a promise of life. Death does not have the final word. Jesus brings life from death. We know the power of the resurrection even more when we remember the death that happened first. Grief and loss will continue to be part of our human experience, but because of the Gospel, we have the hope of new life. 




At Easter time, we celebrate the resurrection of our Savior. We treasure even more the triumph of life over the grave. The resurrection of Jesus is central to our faith. His life gives us hope, undeniable. unshakeable hope. The very same power that raised Christ from the dead is available to us today-- in every struggle, in every moment of suffering and loss. 

How often do we find hope in death? What is there to be gained? As believers, we have the hope of eternal life in Heaven after death. But what hope do we have in other types of death we experience on earth? We experience loss in many ways-- death of hopes and dreams, loss of relationships and independence. Changing seasons bear loss continually. 

I have thought a lot about loss lately-- particularly the loss of dreams. We all have dreams. Sometimes we create them as we daydream about what we want life to look like. Other times, without realizing it, we develop expectations of what life should be. When our expectations go unmet, we experience loss.

As I experience the excitement of our new birthed desire to adopt, I also grieve the loss of a dream-- the dream of what I expected our family would be. I expected to see Asher as a big brother to a sibling who looked like him. I expected to identify ways in which our biological kids show different personality traits from me or Paul. I imagined Asher coming to the hospital to meet his new sibling and the excitement he would experience. As I process the loss of one dream and the new life of another, it hit me, there would be no new life without death. Without the barreness I have experienced, new life of adoption would not have been born. 


This year at Easter, as I celebrated Jesus' resurrection, I found even more comfort in His death. Jesus' resurrection would not have been possible without his death. Death had to come before new life could come. In the same way, we cannot experience new life in Christ without dying first to ourselves. We try to avoid loss. We hate death. But it is in knowing death that we can share in the power of His resurrection, know His comfort and experience new life in the midst of loss.

 

{That I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.  Phil 3:10-11}

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