Matthew 28:5-6 (NIV)
5 The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.
Easter is obviously a very exciting time in Christianity. I created the painting, “Risen” this week to express my ideas on Easter in general and especially during our trying times of Covid-19.
The painting, “Risen,” has the three crosses to represent Jesus being crucified on the middle cross with the two thieves on his left and right. The sunrise in the background shows the hope in Jesus in his resurrection on Easter Sunday. The sunrise symbolism gives so much beauty behind the darkness of the awful death of crucification. This juxtaposition of death and life, mourning and celebration has always intrigued me. The contrast between hopelessness at the Messiah’s death to overjoyed relief and sense of security really makes me think about the times that have quickly had drastic changes in emotions.
I can recall when I was about 8 years old and I was traveling across Wisconsin with my Dad and younger brother. We were driving from our home in northern Wisconsin to visit my uncle and his family in the Milwaukee suburbs. Growing up very poor, we never had nice vehicles that would be considered reliable . In this trip, an old four door Chevy was our trusty ride that was our hope of making the long drive. Even in that old car, I will never forget the feeling of safety I had with my Dad behind the wheel.
I think that in times of uncertainty, like we are living now, we need to have that same sense of safety and hope for our trip in life. We need to trust our Father to guide us on our path no many how many speed bumps and breakdowns may happen.
On that journey to Milwaukee as a boy, our trusty Chevy had engine problems and overheated just north of Madison near the small town of Lodi. With our car being out of service, we were stranded. Fortunately, my dad had a good friend living in Lodi who was available to pick us up and generously offered us a place to stay that evening. My dad and his friend had a great time visiting and the next day, we were able to finish our journey to Milwaukee as planned with a new thermostat being installed in our trusty Chevy.
As Americans, we have survived stock market crashes, wars, terrorist attacks, polar vortexes, and many natural disasters. Today, it seems we need this hope in our Father more than ever. Our plans may change, but through generous friends and faith, we will finish our journeys as God planned. As Covid-19 rips across the US, please keep or find your faith in God and you will come out of this stronger than you ever thought possible.