Where would you be without Jesus?
My dear friend Pastor Edward has asked me this question often, and each time I'm more thankful for the reminder to consider it. I don't know your answer, but mine is the same every time: Without Jesus I would be in jail, in hell, or in jail on my way to hell!
We should not by any means constantly be looking back on all of our past failures and mistakes, but it is vital to our relationship with Christ to remember what He has done for us. We should remember the situations He removed us from, the diseases His wounds healed us of, and the privilege that it is of being in relationship with God as our Father—all of which are possible because of Christ's victory over death and the grave.
So I ask again in earnest, where would you be without Jesus?
I pray your answer points to another, corollary question: What can we as the church of Christ do to help bring the lost to Christ's salvation this Easter?
As much as we should make it a practice to meditate on and give thanks for the many benefits of Christ's cross and resurrection in our personal lives, it is crucial that we not make these blessings all about us. Now that we are beneficiaries of the power of God through Christ, it is our responsibility to partner with Him to ensure that everyone everywhere has access to the transformative gift of salvation and new life in the Savior.
"Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" (Phil. 2:9-11).
Everything God does, and everything Christ did at the cross, was for the lost to be saved, the hurting to be healed, and sinners to be forgiven.
Jesus did not come so that the world would remain in sin.
Jesus did not come so that the world would continue to be suffering with sickness and death.
Jesus did not come to guilt us or shame us and allow us to grieve in our own imperfections.
The entire reason we celebrate Easter, and the entire reason Jesus came to die on the cross was so that we could live with Him forever free from sin, free from sickness, free from death, and free from guilt or shame.
This week I pray that you would be so filled with joy and gratitude over the transformation that has taken place in your life and story because of Christ's cross and resurrection that you would be inspired afresh to "go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation" (Mark 16:15).
After all, where would the lost be without you, the hands and feet of Jesus? As Dutch Sheets put it in his book Watchman Prayer, "We are His body—His hands, feet, voice—and what He does, He will do through us. We are Plan A and there is no Plan B."
Mikel French has challenged spiritual awakening all across America, where many celebrations extended into multiple weeks, and has conducted celebrations in France, Sweden, Russia, Romania, Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Serbia, Germany, South Africa, Malawi, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Haiti, Japan, Singapore, India and Thailand. He conducted an outreach celebration in Manila, Philippines, reaching 200,000 teenagers with the Book of Hope. Through the generous support of partners, he has presented the message of Jesus Christ to millions of people in the nation of Russia through televised citywide soul-winning celebrations. Mikel considers it an honor to assist in conducting the annual pastor's conference, where thousands of pastors from Russia's 11 time zones come for training, teaching and equipping. Mikel and his wife, Marsha, reside in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
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