This post-Easter devotion serves to continue our reflection and thanksgiving of the significance of Christ’s resurrection.
John 20:17; John 1:11-13; and John 16:22-24.
What is the connection between Easter and family in these verses? How is the family unit defined? How is the family unit being transformed?
The resurrection of Jesus offers the start of a new family. For our devotion here, we will focus on how Jesus enacts this in John 20:17. Notice what Jesus tells Mary: As Mary is clinging to Jesus, he tells her, “Don’t cling to me.” It may sound rude and unkind of Jesus, but it is not. For Jesus’ resurrection demands urgency for God’s purposes. So, Jesus continues by saying, “but go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God’”. The terms Jesus uses here are profound: “brothers”, “my father”, “my God”. Did you catch the language? This is the first time in the Gospel of John that Jesus makes such a statement.
So why does He say it here? The answer has to do with Easter. Something happened on Good Friday and in His resurrection that made this happen. You see, even though every human is in one sense a child of God because we’re all humans (He made us), we are also wayward children. We all rebel and disown God as our Father. We all go our way and think we know best. We have all done this to our earthly parents, and we have done even more with God. This rebellion against God began with the first humans and we continue that tradition. It is in this way that every human is not a child of God. But in love, God chose to pursue us despite our continual defiance. He sent Jesus to forgive sin, change our hearts, and because of the cross and resurrection we can now be welcomed into God’s family.
This is a profound truth and one that changes everything: because of Easter, you have the chance to be part of a new family. You can now embrace God as your true and heavenly Father and be part of a spiritual family forever. This is amazing! Oh happy day, indeed! There is but one thing you need to do to join this family and that is to believe. To believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior over your life and to follow him for all your days. For in his arms and in his footsteps, you will experience the depths of fellowship and love in such a family as you have never experienced before.
Look back at the verses you read to begin this devotion: How would you now define the spiritual family of God? What attributes does it have? What things are possible for you if you are in this family? How can the reality of this greater, spiritual family give you comfort today?
Do you have other questions about Easter? Check out our post on “3 Facts You Need To Know About Easter”