Letter from Co-Founder and Executive Director
Easter Sunday, April 12, 2020
How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings. Psalm 36:7
There was a story in National Geographic some 20 years ago about a forest fire in Yellowstone National Park, some forest rangers began a trek up a mountain to survey the damage. One ranger found a bird of which nothing was left but the carbonized, petrified shell, covered in ashes, huddled at the base of a tree. Somewhat sickened by this eerie sight, the ranger knocked the bird over with a stick—and three tiny chicks scurried out from under their dead mother’s wings. When the blaze had arrived, the mother had remained steadfast instead of running. Because she had been willing to die, those under the cover of her wings lived.
And Jesus said, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you that kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings” (Luke 13: 34).
He did indeed gather Jerusalem’s children under his wings—and he was consumed. All real, life-changing love is costly, substitutionary sacrifice. It is the great gift that we celebrate in the aftermath of the Good Friday. Jesus is our safe place, even in the midst of the fire, He is immovable even in the face of His own pain. He was consumed so we could be made whole.
The Genesis account of the creation says that God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it God rested from all His work. Gen. 2:3.
On the seventh day of Holy Week just passed, all was silent as God, in Christ, was laid in the tomb, and God rested. Fear and uncertainty gripped all of Jerusalem after the events of Good Friday. Since that first Easter Sunday when He rose from the grave and broke the silence, all Christians have gathered to celebrate the risen Christ.
We celebrate today, as families scattered by the “safer-at-home” mandate of the COVID-19 pandemic. Fear grips all of the earth with the uncertainty of the invisible coronavirus. Jesus is our safe place, even in the midst of the pandemic. We look forward to the day when we will gather again as whole families. We pray for those who have suffered loss, and trust the Christ who makes all things whole through His death and resurrection.