An Empty Celebration
Philippians 2:5-11

Opening ill.--Jeremy was not a normal child. He had a terminal illness which affected both his body and his mind. Still, his parents had tried to give him as normal a life as possible and had sent him to a religious elementary school. At the age of 12, Jeremy was only in second grade, seemingly unable to learn. He was a frustration to his teacher and to all the children in the class.
Springtime came, and the children talked excitedly about the coming of Easter. Their teacher told them the story of Jesus, and then to emphasize the idea of new life springing forth, she gave each of the children a large plastic egg with this assignment: "I want you to take this home and bring it back tomorrow with something inside that shows new life. Do you understand?"
All the children responded enthusiastically, "Yes, Miss Miller!" All of them, that is, except for Jeremy. He just listened carefully, his eyes never leaving the teacherís face. Had he understood what she had said about Jesusí death and resurrection? Did he understand the assignment? The teacher thought perhaps she should call his parents and explain the project to them, but she got busy and forgot.
The next morning, 19 children came to school, laughing and talking as they placed their eggs in a large wicker basket on Miss Millerís desk. After they completed their math lesson, it was time to open the eggs. In the first egg, Miss Miller found a flower. She said, "Oh yes, a flower is certainly a sign of new life. When plants peek through the ground, we know that spring is here." A small girl in the first row waved her arms. "Thatís my egg, Miss Miller," she called out.
The next egg contained a plastic butterfly, which looked real. The teacher held it up. She said, "We all know that a caterpillar changes and grows into a beautiful butterfly. Yes, that is new life, too." Little Judy smiled proudly and said, "Miss Miller, that one is mine!"
Next, the teacher found a rock with moss on it. She explained that moss, too, showed life. Billy spoke up from the back of the classroom. "My daddy helped me!"
Then the teacher opened the fourth egg. But the egg was empty! Surely it must be Jeremyís, she thought, and, obviously, he didnít understand her instructions. If only she hadnít forgotten to phone his parents. Because she did not want to embarrass him, she quietly set the egg aside and reached for another. Suddenly Jeremy spoke up. "Miss Miller, arenít you going to talk about my egg?" A bit flustered, the teacher said, "But Jeremy -- your egg is empty!" He looked into her eyes and said softly, "Yes, but Jesusí tomb was empty, too!"

Truly, the greatest symbol of new life is found in an empty tomb!

"But the angel answered and said to the women, íDo not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the
Jeff Lewis
March 25, 2016
,Great message Pastor Shirley, and thank you for sharing! God bless.
Bright Eromhonsele
March 12, 2016
,Wow, never thought in this direction! I really learned enough. Thank you man of God, I pray for more revelations upon you in Jesus Name Amen.
Chris Davies
March 10, 2016
,It is in simplicity we find christ. Moving illustration. Many thanks.
Donald Pope
March 27, 2015
Great emptiness exemplifies the Lord's fullness. Well said in sermon!!!!
Vanessa Ridgeway
August 24, 2010
The mere essence of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is a awesome experience. A expereiece I hope that will never leave my presence.
Fini Chen
April 8, 2009
e very new insight... really touched and build my faith in Christ
Normand Cote
March 17, 2008
Great stories thx