Easter weekend is finally here. Of all the major church holidays we celebrate, this (extended) weekend is my favorite. From Maundy Thursday’s celebration of the Last Supper to Good Friday’s reflection on the death of Jesus. But Easter is the capstone. It’s the crescendo we’ve been building to since Christmas.

This year, I’m seeing it in a different light. No longer just an awe-filled celebration of victory over death, but also a dread-filled moment where we step back and realize exactly who it is we serve. It’s the healthy fear of the Lord that we hear about throughout the Scriptures. It’s the logic-defying truth that God is even bigger than death, a concept our limited minds can not truly understand.

Read on for this week’s cover article in the announcements.

Recently, we showed a section of the Gospel of John in worship about the resurrection of Lazarus. I experienced the story from a new perspective that day. Oftentimes, I miss the feelings behind stories—the mood. Music and solid acting really conveyed the sense of dread and awe the people must have felt at seeing Lazarus walk out of the tomb. My heart flutters just thinking of being there first-hand to witness it.

Flash forward to “Good” Friday, and Jesus is dying on the cross. After He dies, His friends are mourning and distraught. Because it was Friday, there was not time to prepare the burial spices and ointments, so Jesus was laid in a tomb until after the Sabbath. But what His friends found that first Easter morning was the unexpected.

And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? Luke 24:5

What dread and awe must the women have felt upon hearing these words? Or Peter, as he ran to the tomb to confirm the news of Jesus’ resurrection himself, upon entering and seeing only the cloths? Or the two men on the road to Emmaus, whose hearts burned within them as Jesus secretly taught them along the way?

Two-thousand years later, do you feel the same dread and awe? Jesus, who was dead, is alive. It defies logic. It is incomprehensible. It’s awesome and fills me with dread at the same time.

Jesus is risen. He is indeed. Alleluia!