Think back to the last time you experienced a thunderstorm. Think of the lightning, and then the thunder — sometimes, a low rumbling sound a long way off, and other times, a loud, terrifying CRACK when the storm is near. What did you experience in the time between the lightning and the thunder?
Or think of a time, perhaps a long time ago, when you had to sit an examination, and then wait before you received your grade. What did you feel in the time between? Or perhaps you have been blessed enough to have found a life partner, someone you would like to marry, and it was up to you to propose. What went through your mind once you'd asked, "Will you marry me?" Try to recall — or imagine — what it was or would be like while you waited for that hoped-for answer of "Yes!"
Or perhaps you've had to have medical tests done and have had to wait for the results. In some cases, these could literally be a question of life and death, and there is nothing you can do to hurry the results along or change their outcome.
The time between is special. It's a time like no other. It's a time of anticipation, of worry, of hope, and of fear — a time of waiting.
Psalm 130:5-6a – I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning. (NIV)
Psalm 27:13-14 – I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. (NIV)
Just imagine how the disciples felt in the time between Jesus' death on Good Friday and His resurrection on Easter Sunday: grief, pain, disillusionment, loss of the hope that they had put in the Messiah, and fear of recrimination from the Jews. Don't ignore all those emotions, for they are real, and they are important at Easter time. Don't avoid them. Face them. Meditate on them. Pray on them. All those emotions are part of the Easter story: from staying with the Lord in Gethsemane, to watching His betrayal and trial, to weeping in anguish at the foot of the cross, to the emptiness and loss on Saturday, to the miraculous glory of His holy resurrection on Sunday. All are part of the Easter story. All are part of your own personal journey as a follower of Christ, as you live through your personal times of anticipation, worry, hope, fear, and waiting.
Don't avoid the time between. Open your heart. Don't lose your faith. Let your Lord use that time to enrich your understanding of His resurrection victory and to deepen your faith in Christ.
Prayer: Holy and precious God, thank You for all the parts of the Easter story, and especially for the time between. Help us to see our own time of waiting as a gift from You — a holy gift. Help us to use this time to deepen our understanding of You and Your purpose for us. We pray these things in the name of Your Son, our Saviour, Jesus the Christ. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "Were You There" (Lyrics)