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What is on the other side?

25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
John 11:25-26

Last year on Labor Day, I took Seth to Valley Fair for the day. This year he was determined to go on the Wild Thing and Steel Venom roller coasters. He was afraid (especially afraid of Steel Venom), but wanted to go on them. I wanted to help him succeed, so I did for him, what you probably have done for yourself or for someone else. I told him to watch the people on the cars. As we stood in line, and as we kept moving forward in line, I told him to watch the people. Some looked scared. Others with great joy sat waiting for the ride to engage. We heard the click, click, click of the cars going up the first incline, then the screams and laughs as the ride went on. Then we saw the people’s faces as they came back. Joy, excitement, exhilaration. This gave Seth confidence to go on the rides.

Every one of us is standing in line. And our line leads everyone to the same place. We are going to die.

And, one of the most difficult parts of death is that it’s like a roller coaster, that we can see someone enter, but they never come back. This makes death terrifying. What is on the other side?

But with Jesus, we have so much hope. With Jesus, we have someone who has died and has come back again.

He went through death, suffered in our place for our sins, and came out the other side, raised to new life. He’s the only one in history to do this. And, he has done it for us.

Because Jesus has the power to give life, and because Jesus died the death we deserve for our sins, we can be freed from fear of dying.

We can still hate it, be angry with it, mourn it, but fears can be swallowed up in hope. Why?

Because Jesus says, if we say “yes” to him, and we trust him, even though we die, we will live again. George Herbert once wrote, “Death used to be an executioner, but Jesus has made it a gardener.” We are sown into the ground, so that one day we will rise again. Jesus has that kind of power. With Jesus there is hope. With Jesus there is someone who has been there, and come back again, and he says everything is going to be ok. Trust me.

Do you believe this?

Is there someone in your life, you can share this with? This is the greatest of all news. Let it shape your heart, and as it does, share it with others!

Tim Porter

Lead Pastor for the Mission


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