This was my first “novel” and has sold over 10,000 copies in English. Not sure about the others. I wrote this under contract and don’t get any royalties, so it’s hard to know for sure what the sales figures are. It was published in 2005, in English, 2012 in German, 2011 in Ukranian, and 2014 in Spanish. All but the Ukranian copy are available from Rod and Staff Publishers.
Is Easter a chance to go to church and show off your latest wardrobe? A chance for your worship team to show off its talents? A time for your pastor to use his greatest oratorical skills to impress the crowd? Maybe even the opportunity to fill the offering baskets to overflowing!
Most of us would say a hearty NO to the paragraph above. This is a day for us to think about what Jesus did for us. Good Friday is past, and this morning the tomb is empty. The work is finished, and Evil has received its death blow. Hallelujah!
Most Christians will agree with the latter paragraph in general terms. The thoughts may stir us and we may resolve to allow the risen Savior to be our King. But unfortunately, by the end of the week, too many of us will have forgotten all about it. Life will go on as normal.
Is that why Jesus died? And why He rose from the tomb? So that you and I can have an emotional high once a year? I wonder how often our Savior weeps at the callousness of those who claim to be His bride?
I think part of the problem is that we misunderstand why Jesus came in the first place. Did Jesus ever state that His main reason for coming to earth was so that I can escape hell fire? Isn’t that somewhat of a selfish reason for me to serve Him? Just because of what I get out of it?
I think this concept is one of the keys to the fact that so many of us do such a poor job of serving Christ in our everyday life. It is great that He loved us and died for us. But Jesus said that He came to establish the Kingdom of Heaven. He is our King as well as our Savior. So I like to think of Easter as coronation day. Jesus rose to receive His crown. His kingdom has come, not for our benefit, but for His! We love Him and serve Him for who He is, not just for what we get out of it.
Its true that we still live in the shadowlands, as CS Lewis would have said. This is our apprenticeship. Someday, the clouds will roll back like a scroll and He will return to us. Then His Kingdom will take on a new reality. But in the meantime we need to show the world that the Kingdom is real, right now, and that we are serving a new King. The resurrection is the key to this new life of fellowship with our King and His servants.
We need to realize this every morning and through every day of our life. I am a servant of the King. On Easter we rejoice that our King rose, and that this is His day. But every day is a day to rejoice that He has saved us and made us worthy to serve Him.