By Rev. Theodore Hampton

It was not a good week. After three years of work the results were ambiguous at best. There were a few who believed, but most did not. Some of the accomplishments were beyond amazing. But the numbers were small. Many refused to believe and were actually offended or even angry. Those who believed or at least wanted to believe were passively timid. You really could not blame them. The angry ones were loud and many were armed. The Passover Dinner did not exactly go well. It was not the traditionally celebratory event. There was tension in the room and the conversation was awkward. After dinner everything just sort of fell apart. The guards came and he was arrested and carried off to prison.

The next day was unbelievable. There were some kind of hearings and a quickie trial of some sort. Then the rumor mill started to work. The word everywhere was that he had been convicted and was to be executed immediately Some thought, surely that could not be true, and they went to see. They saw him in the streets being force marched toward the hill called Calvary. Their hearts turned cold and they were all but paralyzed with fear. Some followed along on the edges of the crowd, while others in fear and grief gathered in secret places. In just a few hours the word was out. He was dead. Those who loved him took their shattered dreams and broken hearts and gathered in private places. It had not been a good week.

Time passed. One day? Two days? Three days? Who was counting? When suddenly there was an electricity in the air. People who had known him were feverishly rushing about and whispering, “Have you heard? The tomb is open. He is not there. He has risen.” It wasn’t a good week, but suddenly grieving hearts surged with hope. “Time enough for sorrow, I’m leaving my tears behind. I sense a bright tomorrow, a better world I’ll find... There’s a new day dawning, I can feel it in my heart. A time of hope and healing, a chance for a brand new start.”

For He is risen. He lives. How do I know? He lives within my heart. Rejoice, for we are an Easter people!

Faithfully yours, Ted