Summary: A sermon on the Power of the Resurrection inspired by Rick Warren and including some of his quotes.
Easter Sunday Sermon April 1, 2018
Imagine if all of the mistakes you have made were completely erased. What would your life be like?
Every regret, every action, every word spoken that you regret, erased. Never happened. What would tha
t be like?
We might think that life would be awesome, or at least much better.
Now, imagine if all of the mistakes that you were made were forgiven. What would your life be like?
Those are 2 very different questions. And to answer them I want us to consider the power of what we celebrate on this day. I want us to think about the power of the resurrection.
I want us to think about the power of the resurrection because the power of the resurrection is the power to change.
The power of the resurrection is:
The power to let go of your past, to leave the past behind.
The power of the resurrection is the power to start over
The power of the resurrection is the power to keep going when you're out of power, out of energy.
It is the power to change your life.
We're going to explore this in the short time that we have right now.
The power to let go of your past, to leave the past
Time is a strange thing. Most of what happens to us in the day to day does really stay with all that long. But make a mistake, or have a traumatic experience, and we remember it quite well.
I recall driving with Barbara and some friends to a baseball game in Kitchener back in 1989. I was driving, and I was having an intense conversation with someone in the back seat, my friend, John Epp, who I used to work with at Evergreen.
I would turn my head to look at him while we were speaking. This went on for a while, and then the traffic came to a halt and I didn't stop in time because of being distracted.
I hit the car in front of us and caused some damage to the car, a friend's car.
Now I don't really remember anything else that year, but I do remember that day, that event. I remember the fear of realizing at the last second that I didn't have time to break, knowing I was going to hit the car in front of us.
I remember the embarrassment of doing such a foolish thing. I remember the regret. I remember it like it was yesterday. Do you think I recall much else about 1989? Nope.
Now, I wish that hadn't happened. And in the scenario of the question I started with, it wouldn't have happened. I would have no memory of that day, and no regrets because I wouldn't have done anything wrong.
Do you think I would have learned about the dangers of driving while distracted by an intense conversation? No!
Which means I most likely would have done that same thing some other day; some other year, I may well have had an accident for the same reason, maybe a more serious accident. I would not have learned a blessed thing.
The friend whose car I smashed that day forgave me. That meant that he bore the results of my carelessness. He had to pay to have the car repaired, because I was a student and had zero money. So my lesson cost someone else dearly.
Because I was forgiven, I didn't have to pay the cost. Someone else did.
And because I was forgiven, I acquired wisdom so that I could go forward and not make such mistakes again. That is the benefit of screwing up and then being forgiven.
The power of the resurrection is the power to let go of your past, to leave the past behind.
We all have hang ups, hinderances, heaviness. We have regrets, recriminations and mistakes we recycle in our minds over and over again.
The resurrection of Jesus the Christ means that He has triumphed over sin, over our mistakes, our regrets over the guilt of our mistakes. All that could be held against has been forgiven because of Jesus' death and resurrection.
That means we can let go of the regrets of our past. We can revisit them only to learn from them and to celebrate that we've been forgiven. That is the power of the resurrection.
The power of the resurrection is the power to start over.
A few months back at the start of January, how many here made some kind of resolution to change? How's that going? I was going to work out in my chilly, chilly basement. Yeah, right.
Maybe you want to shed some pounds. Maybe you want to finally break from your old addictions.
Maybe you want to stop dating cute jerks and finally find a decent person to settle down with.