Bob Gas from “The Word for Today” tells the story of a nine year old boy named Philip who suffered with down syndrome. In Sunday School the other kids made fun of him because he was different. The Sunday before easter the teacher gave each of the kids a plastic egg and asked them to look for symbols of new life. Like seeds and leaves, then place them into the egg. The idea was to open their eggs on Easter Sunday and discuss what they had found. When the children gathered, they collected all sorts of things such as flowers, butterflies and rocks. But when the teacher opened Philip’s egg, it was empty. One child said, “That’s not fair! He didn’t do it right!”. But Philip tucked at the teachers sleeve and said, “I did do it right! It’s empty, because the tomb is empty! That’s why we have new life.” The class gasped and from then on Philip rose to a new level of respect and became part of the group. But Philip’s family knew his time was short. Too many problems for one small body, so that summer, he died. As the class of 8 year olds faced the reality of death, they marched up to the alter, but not with flowers. Together with their teacher, they each placed an empty plastic egg on their friend’s tiny casket. Why is the resurrection of Jesus so important? For two reasons. Number one; his resurrection guarantees yours. And number two; if you live long enough you’ll experience the heartache of losing someone you love. The good news of the resurrection of Jesus Christ guarantees that you will meet him again. Alive, immortal and just like Jesus. In John 11:25 it says, “Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying.”
Bob Gass from “The Word for Today” shares the story about John Griffith, the railway controller. His responsibility was for a draw bridge over the Mississippi River. One day he took his young son to work with him. After putting the massive draw bridge up, Griffith was eating lunch when suddenly he heard the whistle for the Memphis Express roaring towards the crossing. Leaping from the observation deck, he ran to throw the control switch. Glancing down, his heart stopped. His son had fallen into the gears, trapping his legs into the cogs. Desperately he tried to devise a rescue plan, but there was no time. His son was down there, but there were 400 passengers on the train. Griffith knew what he had to do. Burying his face in his arm, he pushed the master switch just in time to lower the bridge into place as the train thundered across. Then raising his head he looked into the passing windows with tear filled eyes. There were businessmen casually reading the newspaper. Ladies sipping coffee and children eating ice cream. Nobody even looked at the controller house or glanced down at the great gearbox. In agony Griffith cried out, “I sacrificed my son for you people! Don’t you care?!” But the train rushed by. Nobody heard the anguished father’s words. Think of the sacrifice that John Griffith made to save everyone on that train. It’s a pail comparison to the sacrifice that our heavenly father made when he gave his one and only son for us. John 3:16 tells us that “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Have you thanked God today for the sacrifice he made by giving his one and only son for us? Maybe today is the day to thank him and get your heart right with God.
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