“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.’” John 11:25a
At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, fear permeated the intensive care unit. One particularly sick patient needed to be put on a ventilator for a chance to survive. The healthcare team began the preparations, but before the procedure could be accomplished, the patient became pulseless. The trained team sprang into action with chest compressions, medications, and interventions aimed at bringing the patient back to life. Despite the expert team, the efforts were not working. The doctor, a believer, was about to voice concern that it may be time to stop the fruitless efforts and declare a time of death. “No!” the Holy Spirit whispered strongly to the doctor’s heart. “Declare resurrection life.” A gift of faith came upon the doctor and instead of pronouncing death, she declared, “Life in the name of Jesus!” The patient was immediately found to have a pulse. The doctor then turned and looked at the oxygen monitor, which was registering a number in the 50s, not compatible with life. Normally, patients with COVID-19 lung injury would take 30 minutes to recover their oxygen saturation to a range in the 80s. She declared, “Oxygen increase in the name of Jesus!” and the oxygen saturation that was initially reading in the 50s climbed to a number in the 90s within a matter of minutes.
We serve a God of resurrection power, who has Himself been raised from the dead. Nothing is impossible for Him! As His body, we have the privilege of knowing Him in the power of His resurrection. Paul tells us that “the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you” (Rom. 8:11). The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of resurrection who is with us today, giving us power to live out the resurrected life of Christ and to bring the power of the resurrection everywhere we go.
There is much to experience of Christ’s resurrection power in this life, but there is much more to come. In fact, Paul says “we are to be pitied more than all men,” if we only have hope in Christ for this life (1 Cor. 15:19). When Jesus resurrected Lazarus from the dead, it was a sign of the promise, but it was not the full promise. The fullness of the reality of the resurrection life of Jesus is that the perishable becomes imperishable, the dishonorable becomes glorious, the weak becomes powerful, the natural becomes spiritual (1 Cor. 15:42-44).
Whatever situation you face today, there is hope because of the resurrection power of God. He is with us in this world, and He moves with power on our behalf. But what we experience now is just a foretaste of what is to come. You have permission to hope. Nothing is impossible for the Resurrection and the Life!
P.S. Do you need a touch from the Resurrection and the Life? If you know you need that dedicated time to reconnect with the love and life of Jesus, we want to invite you to be a part of our second “First Love Retreat” we are hosting in January 2024. We believe it will be a time to reset, refresh, and resurrect. We would love for you to join us.
1 Story used with permission
FIRST LOVE RETREAT
Bradenton, FL // Jan 5-8, 2024
First Love Retreat will provide simple teachings to enhance your devotional times. Together, we will meditate on the reality of who God is: His goodness, His sacrifice, His pre-eminence, His love. Enjoy His presence in times of quiet reflection and meaningful conversations. Encounter Him, and experience who He is.
Come. Rest. Renew the fire of your First Love.