Yesterday it was my privilege to lead the community Easter sunrise worship service. On Easter morning, as the sun comes up, we have a worship service on the hill a bit behind our church. This picture was taken shortly before we started, as people were walking up the hill and the sun was beginning to break across a ridge east of town.
Last night I was reading Psalm 8, which opens with this verse:
"O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens."
Reading that verse took me back to a moment during our sunrise worship, a bit farther along when the sun was fully visible, just at the top of the ridge. I was facing the congregation and had my back to the sun, and as I was speaking I turned briefly towards it as I said something about the rising sun on that first Easter morning.
And when I looked towards the sun I was struck by two thoughts. The first was how dazzlingly bright it was at that very moment. It was so bright that I could not look at for more than a brief moment. And the second thought was that as bright as it was, it was only a kind of weak indicator of the glory of our risen Savior, Jesus. The brightness of His glory, right now, is something so powerful that I, sinner that I am, wouldn’t be able to stand its presence for even a moment.
But…and this is a significant "but"…I am a sinner saved by His grace and mercy towards me. Easter reminds me of many things, and one of those things is that one day He is coming again, in great glory. And all those who are His will delight in His glory. One of the passages I preached from on Easter during our regular morning worship was Colossians 3:1-4, which says this in the closing verse:
"When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory."
The brightness found in yesterday's sunrise was a reminder of the glory of my Savior, Jesus, a glory that will be seen fully when He returns. It is a glory I will not try to hide from, only because I am His. Rather, it will be a great delight to see His glory, and to be with Him in it.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.