Article Title: Look into the Heart of Easter and See
Shared by: craig
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Humans have a natural desire to understand the cycle of life, death and rebirth . Christianity has its roots in the mystery of eternal life. This faith is a way of ‘understanding the unknowable’. However, one has to be a believer to get into different levels of understanding, which is achieved through the power of faith. Christianity is a far more active participation and a personal relationship (with God) than other more “fatalistic” faiths.
“We can cling to out-dated and unscientific belief systems, or move forward into an enlightened age where science and spirituality can give our lives fresh meaning and purpose.”
– Lee and Steven Hager
THE EASTER MESSAGE LOOK INTO THE HEART OF EASTER AND SEE
The observance of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ is central to the Christian religion. We asked leaders of the principal denominations to share their thoughts on Easter
Here are some Easter messages from New Zealand From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10635696&p…
ONE PERSON CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
“’One person can make a difference!’ Easter yells through the silence of spectators to say, ‘Your being here makes a difference – no matter how small you feel.’ What can one person do? Quite a lot, actually The world can be a better place because you’re in it. Look into the heart of Easter and see.’- The Rev Alan Upson, president, Methodist Church of New Zealand:
LIFE IS TRANSFORMED
“His followers were so convinced that Jesus was still alive with some form of transformed life that they refused to renounce this belief, even in the face of beatings, imprisonment, and death itself. In the words of the poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, to be ‘charged’ with the grandeur of God.” – The Most Rev Patrick Dunn, Catholic Bishop of Auckland:
“Jesus Christ there’s opportunity for anybody to be reconciled to relationship with God through Jesus Christ. We were created to be in this relationship. Estrangement from God lies at the root of all that makes life fractured and unmanageable. Easter invites us to consider what happened 2000 years ago, and to experience the reconciliation offered in Jesus Christ. God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself… The witnesses at the cross didn’t see it, but now this has been revealed. Easter invites us to believe in the goodness of God and God’s power to redeem.” – Major Heather Rodwell, divisional commander, the Salvation Army:
WEIGHT OF SORROWS
“Jesus took upon himself the tremendous burden of the sins of the world. The result of this spiritual atonement is that forgiveness is available to those who repent of the things they do wrong and which separate them from God.” – Elder Michael A. Roberts, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:
SEARCH FOR INTEGRITY
”No transformation can take place until we have that moment of ‘brutal honesty’.” – The Rev Andrew Norton, moderator of the Auckland Presbytery – POWER OF FORGIVENESS
“Non-retaliation . Through the cross of Jesus, God was offering the forgiveness of sins and the reconciliation of God and humanity. And from this spiritual reality there came a human outworking. Those who experience forgiveness and reconciliation with God are then to make that real in their human relationships. Those who have been shown mercy must act in the same way. The message of Easter is about the unconditionally forgiving love of God and the hope of new beginnings for all.” – The Very Rev Ross Bay, Bishop-elect of the Anglican diocese of Auckland:
You can never be successful without forgiveness.” (like Nelson Mandela, the “father of freedom/democracy in South Africa)
Forgiveness is a great tool in healing (the giver, as well as the receiver) “Forgiveness is not an occasional act; it’s an on-going state of mind. A long and arduous journey that starts with a single large step – in spite of immense pain, the decision to forgive, a commitment to the ideal… and one that gives freedom… to the forgiven, yet also to the forgiver.”
“When you forgive (another person or country), you empty your mind of negative thoughts (perhaps even thoughts as strong as hate). Then the infinite Spirit of God makes a fresh space in our hearts to allow new positive feelings to take their place.. to pour into our hearts. The ‘freed’ person then moves forward with a new spirit…which takes root in people’s minds, hearts, spirits and even in the deepest recesses of their souls.”
WHAT IS OUR RESPONSE?
“The Crucifixion of Jesus on Good Friday and the celebration of new life that is available through the resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday. Easter Sunday – or Resurrection Sunday – provides us with hope and confidence that as death and the grave could not hold Jesus, that in Him we, too, can be raised to an eternal future free from sin and grief.” – Pastor Colin Hopkins, Auckland Baptist Churches:
“The larger Easter message is that the world, left to human selfishness is chaotic and brutal”, writes Muslim academic Abdal Hakim Murad. “Christians think that God himself had to come into the world and transform it from within. Muslims and Jews deny that God can have a body. But we do think that the world needs redemption. When the spirit of God touches any human being, of whatever faith or gender, that person is a sign of heaven.”
A sense of ‘the Other, of something beyond ourselves, which many recognise as God, and Christians encounter through Jesus Christ, gives meaning and direction when all hope seems lost. The redemptive power of Christ is alive and well both inside and outside-organised religious frameworks.
Rev Stephen Donald, East Coast Anglican Parish, Tolaga Bay, New Zealand
Sourced from http://www.gisborneherald.co.nz/article/?id=16710
Shared by craig
About the submitter: Craig believes in (and loves) sharing information and insights to try to make a difference in this world: to help and especially encourage people along life’s magical journey … and that brings him the greatest joy.
‘The Spirit of a True Champion: A Look into the Mind of Jesus Christ’ is already available at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007E2WXW0
Together, one mind, one life at a time, let’s see how many people we can impact, encourage, empower, uplift and perhaps even inspire to reach their fullest potentials.
“Where there’s care, there’s hope.”
“Hope is the anchor of the soul.”
“The spring of hope is universal, eternal and will never run dry.” – craig
“When you have hope and love in your heart, then you’ll never walk alone.”