"Monday 5 Things" with D. Paul Graham
The breathtaking nave in the Monesteiro da Batalha, Portugal.
Photo: D. Paul Graham
Monday 5 Things…..Promises…..
Yesterday, for possibly the first time ever, Easter around the world was not celebrated in churches. This may not be much of a big deal for many who attend ‘The Church of C&E” - The Church of Christmas and Easter. But this year, we can add another C to that; the COVIDE church - church on-line in our homes as we remain socially distanced. I enjoyed the multitude of sermons that I watched and listened to on my computer screen. And with full disclosure, I also thoroughly enjoyed an outrageously expensive glass of Barolo while watching Bocelli sing at Duomo di’ Milano. The only complaint I have with that was I wish he would have sung a lot longer. In addition to his beautiful voice bringing me to tears, more songs would have allowed for imbibing in another glass or two of a terrific Italian vino. At a point in time when we don’t know what to believe or who to listen to about this pandemic, I found comfort in reflecting on the promises from the cross and the eternal implications of the resurrection of Christ. With another week of unknowns upon us, on this Easter Monday, it seemed apropos for M5T to focus on some of those promises that I shared a few years ago.
Christ prophesied his victory over death because of His resurrection. In Mark 9:31, Christ said to his disciples, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men. They will kill him and after three days he will rise.” On this Easter Monday, Christians around the world can claim - He is risen indeed.
Without the resurrection, Christianity would have no basis. It is victory over death. In John 11:25-26, Christ was speaking with Lazarus’ sister Martha, he said “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”. A challenge that has eternal implications for us all.
3. Ask, seek, and knock.
In Matthew 7:7, Jesus says “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” An incredible image of prayer, acceptance, and understanding.
2 Peter 3:9 says “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” Nothing is more poignant than the criminal on the cross who, just before he dies, realizes who Christ is. Despite the horrid life the criminal had lived, when he recognized Christ for who he truly was, Christ said to him “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
5. Fullness and Eternity.
1 Peter 2:9 says that we “are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” All this because of the profundity of believing in Christ, his death on the cross, and the truth of his resurrection that 1 John 2:25 sums up with “and this is what he promised us—eternal life.”
Here’s to a week of peace in chaos, focus when so little seems clear, and, as just as a blind tenor on the steps of Duomo sang about new sight discovered through the amazing grace of faith found in Christ, renewed assurance of eternal life. Blessings for you all.
© 2020 D. Paul Graham, all rights reserved.
D. Paul Graham is passionate about people, culture, photography and business. He has embraced his wanderlust with his travels around the globe and is at peace with his need for spirited drives in all things automotive.
You can find M5T each Monday here on www.southmag.com and by friending D. Paul Graham on Facebook. Paul is also a contributing photographer to South Magazine. His photographic work can be found on Instagram @dpgraham and at www.imageGRAHAM.com . Your feedback is always welcome. Email Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org