In the Meantime… Rest in His Promise
Easter Sunday? That’s tomorrow, the day after today. Saturday was the “in the meantime” for all who witnessed Jesus’ death–it was the dreadful day of waiting and not knowing what was to come. It also represents the “in the meantime” for us. We will experience that same dread and pain, but because we believe in His promise and faithfulness, we have the hope that He is who He says He is and He’ll do what He says He will do. The dawning of a new day brought the resurrection, and that is why we live for the hope of Sunday.
What might you have felt if you were there? Jesus has just been crucified and you witnessed it all. The man who held little children on his lap…calmed the storms…gave sight to the blind…and raised the dead…was now lifeless, laying in a tomb. The long-awaited King was cruelly killed. The Light of the world has been temporarily extinguished. The man who came and said love was greater than power, was killed by power.
You may have felt discouraged, defeated, hopeless. Saturday was the time in between death and resurrection, fear and hope, pain and comfort. The silence of “in the meantime” is not the absence of emotions; it’s embracing the hope and joy that we find in the midst of Jesus. Rick Warren describes joy as “the settled assurance that God is in control of all the details of my life, the quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright, and the determined choice to praise God in every situation.”
Now, the disciples had heard from the mouth of Jesus that this day was coming:
“From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raise to LIFE.” – Matthew 16:21 (NIV)
Jesus said that he himself must be killed and after three days would rise again, so he was crucified and lay lifeless in the tomb. The disciples had been warned but they didn’t know the depth of that reality until they had experienced it. They knew it was coming, but who can prepare for witnessing such a horrifying death of their most beloved, perfect One? They heard Him say that He would rise again, but “in the meantime” what do they do? The silence of that Saturday should have been filled with a calm hope because He always keeps His promises. Our lives are full of uncertainties, but we do have ONE absolute certainty in life…eternity with JESUS.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16 (NIV)
The hope and joy that we have in Him overshadows the darkness of pain and death itself. We have hope that one day we will be rejoicing at his feet in heaven. Until then, “in the meantime,” we have abundant joy in reach because the One who came to die for us in order to save us is coming again. Jesus was not silenced. Come Sunday, power loses. Come Sunday, the ultimate promise has been fulfilled. This we know: He died so that we may live.
The “in the meantime,” the time between Friday and Sunday, was SATURDAY. The pain, sorrow, and despair of that Saturday was overcome by the JOY of Sunday.