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Don’t be fooled!

“Don’t be fooled this Easter,” says the Rev. Anita Hahn. “Christ is alive!”

Superintendent Grand Traverse District

“Here is Our King,” was sung as the opening to the Palm Sunday Celebration at worship this last week. It is a song by the David Crowder Band that always brings this amazing image to me of a processional giving honor and glory to our God. The words of the chorus, “Here is our King, here is our Love, Here is our God who’s come to bring us back to Him. He is the one, He is Jesus!” engage my heart to give praise to our King! (Songwriters: David Crowder, Here Is Our King lyrics © Capitol Christian Music Group) 

How did you see Jesus this last week? Did you celebrate Jesus in your sanctuary? Did you see Jesus in the eyes of those who marched and spoke for the lives of our children and youth this last Saturday (March 24, 2018)? Did you see Jesus in the one who is dying and in the heart of the one who is searching for more?

As we anticipate Easter Sunday through the eyes of this Triumphal Entry, we are aware that Jesus had to face the real world– the politics of the day that were seeking power and might. In the anticipation of Easter Sunday, we will walk to the lowest places of humanity. We will remember Jesus as He eats the last meal with the disciples and we will long to take the pain away on Good Friday. We really don’t like to remember that Jesus suffered. Fully human and fully divine, the crucifixion of Jesus was the one moment that power knew it had defeated God—until God changed our lives, forever!

And Easter falls on April Fools’ Day this year! Who was God kidding over 2,000 years ago, and who will be fooled, today?

When I was little, April Fools’ Day landed on a Sunday Morning and my sister and I tricked my dad- as he was headed out the door for church—saying he had a hole in his pants. I hope there are no jokesters in your family or in your church this Sunday that falls on a day considered “foolish” in our culture or a day for the tricksters! So beware! Have fun!

I remember when Wesley (my oldest son) was young. He said that the song that needed to be sung on Good Friday was, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy!” (Songwriters: Robert Mcferrin Jr., Don’t Worry Be Happy lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group). What does it mean to walk to the tough places with the Jesus we know and proclaim as “Lord and King!” on Sunday while we remember that the same people yelled, “Crucify, Crucify, Crucify him!” on Friday? What does it mean in the midst of our humanness that we have a God who meets us where we are and when we think ALL is lost exclaims, “April Fool!” or should I say, “Christ has risen indeed.”

What is the impossible that you pray God will interrupt so that Christ’s Love can be revealed this Easter?  Where would you like to be fooled! I hear Jesus’ prayer for us, “Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.” John 17:11 (NRSV) What does it mean, amidst our differences, to share the same love with all persons that has been shared with us?

Jesus could have taken His disciples’ suggestions to not return to Jerusalem to be killed. But Jesus came to earth with a larger plan than not dying– he came with the desire to redeem all persons to the love of God. You know what? Jesus didn’t fail!

Here is our King, here is our Love. Here is our God who’s come to bring us back to Him. He is the one, He is Jesus!”

Happy Easter!

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