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Summary: A short talk asking what big buts we are carrying around with us. What big buts are looming in our lives? In the midst of our statements that start with, "But I can't ..." Jesus comes and says, "Shalom. Peace be with you!"

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On the evening of that first day of the week the disciples were together, with the doors locked because they were afraid. I can imagine what they may have been thinking, and I guess there were some massive ‘buts’ in the room!

But it wasn’t meant to be like this. We followed him around and listened to his teaching for three years and now he’s dead. Was it all a waste of time?

But Mary Magdalene says she has seen and encountered Jesus. She’s got this ridiculous grin on her face all the time but I think she’s always been a bit like that – either up or down.

But what happens now? What do we do? To whom do we turn? They killed Jesus! Will we be next? But I denied even knowing him. Three times I denied him. But I remember. He said our grief will be turned to joy!

What Big Buts are you carrying right now? What is looming large and stopping you from moving forward with Jesus? Can you name those ‘buts’ before God?

Jesus came and stood among them, in the midst of their fear, their deflated hopes, their crucified dreams, their regrets and their sorrows and he said, “Peace be with you” (20:19). In Aramaic, the first language of Jesus, it was one word: “Shalom!” Still spoken across Israel every day, and in Jewish homes throughout the world, Jesus said it to them and he says it to you: “Shalom. Peace be with you”; and God’s Shalom is not just an absence of conflict or an end to fear or worry. It is so much more than that. God’s shalom for you and me is the fullness of his peace within us, His well-being in our hearts and minds, a peace that nothing else and no-one else can give.

Whatever big but or little but is looming Jesus says to you and me, “Shalom. Peace be with you.” Let’s pray.


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