Over the past few months of increasing and tragic wars in Ukraine, Ethiopia, Syria, and a dozen regions, it seems as though we live in a tornado of despair and fear that is unrelenting - swirling toxic emotional clouds of despair, death, and defeat over the nations. And, over you and me.

Jesus said in John, “The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy.  I came that they (people everywhere) may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the fullest, letting it overflow, a better life than they ever dreamed of!).

Sometime later his best friend Lazarus died. Jesus was a six-hour walk away but had stayed apart from Lazarus for four days. When he did arrive – Martha, the sister of Lazarus, was upset. “If you had come sooner, my brother would still be alive” she exclaimed.

Jesus said to Martha, “Your brother will live – do not despair or be anxious.” Martha said, “I know at the end of days he will rise again but right now he’s dead!”.

To that plaintive and desperate and despondent cry, Jesus replied with words that echo still today for you and me;

"You don't have to wait for the End. I am, right now, Resurrection and Life. The one who believes in me, even though he or she dies, will live.”  

I love this translation in the Message that says, RIGHT NOW! This is your redeemed life, right now.

You don’t have to wait – you are free! Jesus is all about right now.

His waiting for a few days was a setup to reach thousands of people for Christ. When Lazarus was resurrected, hundreds of people came to his house in Bethany to hear his story. So many that the priests wanted to kill Jesus and Lazarus also.

Jesus defeated death, defeated satan and forever destroyed the works of the enemy – in your life. Personally. In your life Jesus has defeated despair, anger, anxiety, fear, temptation, disappointment, discouragement, selfishness and jealousy.

If toys and treasures could make us happy, of all people Americans would be deliriously happy, but we are not…1/3 of all Americans wake up depressed every day. We do happy things and we have happy times but we are not happy people. We are lonely in a crowded world.

In Matthew, Jesus said, "Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest.” True peace is not the result of war, police action or negotiations – true peace is the result of the cross of Jesus Christ. True peace is found in His presence and life fully engaged in our lives.
Easter is redemption, new life, peace with God and peace in this world – RIGHT NOW.

Jesus is alive, he has risen and he is victorious. And, RIGHT NOW, we live in that overcoming, triumphant power.

Easter is our promise that we may have and enjoy life – no matter the issues of this world. We are alive in Him. Whole in Him, and our joy is in Him. RIGHT NOW.

Easter blessings from Bishop Bronner, Robert Barriger, Eddy Leo, Joann Webster, Doug Stringer and all the CMN team.

Hope is alive, Hope has a name, Hope’s name is Jesus!
Grace and peace to you and your loved ones.