Off-Topic Thursday: Easter and the Day Between
I’ve been thinking about Easter weekend. In years past I’ve thought about Good Friday and Easter Sunday. There are countless books, articles, and sermons about both. But Saturday usually gets brushed off with “But Sunday’s on the way!” at best.
That’s not really surprising. The Bible doesn’t talk about it. All the important stuff happened the day before and the day after. But right now that’s the day on my mind.
The disciples had just had their world completely devastated the day before. Jesus had warned them this was coming, and had promised that He would rise from the dead. In the midst of their grief, fear, and uncertainty, that was the last thing on their mind, though, I’m sure. I know it would have been on mine.
Remember, this wasn’t just their friend or their teacher that had been killed. They knew that Jesus was Someone special. He was sent from God. He was the Messiah—though they didn’t fully grasp what that meant. He was going to change everything. Everything they thought they knew, everything they had believed, everything they had invested their lives in for the last 3+ years was gone. Their friend, their Rabbi, their Lord was dead.
Sure, we know that Sunday morning He was resurrected. But they didn’t know that was coming. Something miraculous that they never dreamed of was just around the corner, but for that dreadful day, it was just darkness.
None of that is new. Here’s what just came to my mind recently, though: That day in between the two momentous days was the Sabbath, and in particular the Passover Sabbath. The day of rest. The day to do no work and spend it in fellowship with God. To them, the world had never been worse. All of God’s promises seemed to have turned up empty. The day that was supposed to commemorate God’s greatest triumph for Israel must have seemed like a hollow shell. And yet they were to spend this day focusing on God and remembering His promises.
I wonder if they felt betrayed by Him? I wonder if they went to synagogue as they had in years past. I wonder who they spent time with that day. I wonder if the reminders of the first Passover brought encouragement, or if it seemed a mockery.
I don’t know. None of us do for sure, nor can we. When it comes down to it, that’s not really the point of Easter weekend.
But at the same time, I can relate to the disciples on that Passover Saturday a little. I’m sure you can, too. You may even know exactly how they felt. You’ve experienced betrayal, abandonment, your world crumbling around you. You’ve felt like everything God has done before is meaningless, and that there is nothing He can do in the future. You may even wonder if He’s really there, or if it’s all been some cruel trick.
I could answer that and tell you that God really is there, He really does care, and what He’s done before He can and will do again. Easter tells us that. If God could create the universe and raise the dead, is there anything He can’t do? And the God who did that in the past “is the same yesterday, today, and forever”.
I could tell you all of that, and that may help you. But it may not. It may sound like nothing more than empty words. What will help? Honestly, I don’t know. It depends on where you are and what you’re going through right now.
- It may be praying—especially when you don’t feel like it. Honest, heartfelt prayers, not the polished “Sunday morning prayers”.
- It may be spending time with other believers who can encourage you and lift you up—even though you’d rather be alone.
- It may be spending time in His Word, asking Him to speak to you through it and remind you of what He’s done before and Who He is.
- It may be serving others, asking the God whose presence you’re unsure of to use you to minister to others who are in dark places, too.
- It may be something else entirely. And it may be more than one of these.
If you’re in one of these times, I would be honored to pray for you. If you’ve been in one of these times, I’d love to hear your story. Please share it in the comments below, or on our Facebook page. If you’d prefer to keep it private, you can email me directly.
I pray you have a joyous Easter, and receive a special reminder of God’s love, care, and promise—even in the midst of your darkness, He is preparing a miracle the likes of which you may have never seen.
1 Vindicate me, O God,
and plead my cause against an ungodly nation;
rescue me from deceitful and wicked men.
2 You are God my stronghold.
Why have you rejected me?
Why must I go about mourning,
oppressed by the enemy?
3 Send forth your light and your truth,
let them guide me;
let them bring me to your holy mountain,
to the place where you dwell.
4 Then will I go to the altar of God,
to God, my joy and my delight.
I will praise you with the harp,
O God, my God.
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.