“I love you.” These three words are considered by many to be the three most beautiful words in the world. They are wonderful, magical words when spoken sincerely. I remember the first time my husband spoke those words to me, words we continue to say daily to one another. I heard these words often as a growing child, and they were some of my mother’s last words to me before she passed. They are beautiful words that I have spoken to my sons since before they were born and they are words I often speak to family and dear friends as well. They are beautiful words.
But there are another three beautiful words that are the foundation for all other meaningful words: Jesus is Alive! Today Christians everywhere celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and if we stop and think about it, this fact alone gives purpose, hope and promise like no other words in any language. Because Jesus is alive, death has lost its power. Yes, it can separate us from those we love for a while but we know that those who die in Christ will live in eternity with Jesus forever, and we will see them again because Jesus is alive! Those three beautiful words give hope for the present and confidence for the future. We trust Jesus, even in the midst of great trials, loss and heartbreak. He promises to turn our mourning into joy, just as he did at the empty tomb that first Easter morning. Because of Christ’s victory over death we are confident that our tombs will one day be vacated, our souls clothed in resurrection bodies. He lives forever, and so will we.
Furthermore, in life we have hope in Christ, empowered to live as he has called us to live, do the things he has told us to do, fulfill the roles he has given us as individuals and as the body of believers. Jesus is alive and our lives are filled with purpose. We are called to do everything for his glory. He gives beauty and meaning to the mundane so that each task before us becomes an opportunity to express thanksgiving and celebrate his resurrection power. We can live lives ho-hum, or we can recognize each moment for what it truly is, a gift from God, and an opportunity to serve and worship him as we stir the soup and sweep the floors, teach our students or manage our business. Regardless of how simple or how grand the activities that occupy our days, they are opportunities to celebrate the Easter truth: Jesus is alive!
Jesus is alive! He stretched out his arms on a cruel wooden cross and said to the world: I love you. Then he rose from the grave to prove it. Jesus loves you. He loves me. Resurrection hope and promise wrapped in his love. Jesus is alive! Three powerful words! Three death-defying words. Three words of hope and life, purpose and promise. Happy Easter!