April/May 2013 - Vol. 67

Reflections for the Easter Season 
by Dave Quintana

The promise of peace
 Jesus’ post-resurrection greeting is a powerful one – “Peace be with you.” Life will not always be smooth, life will not always be easy, everything will not always go our way, but we do have Christ’s peace. Not “happy-happy feel good peace” but true peace – that is “right relationship” with God, with others, and with self. He offers peace to us who have remained silent, peace even to those of us who have failed, denied, or even rejected our Lord. Jesus looks upon each of us with forgiving eyes, longing that we would be in full relationship with him and deeply at peace with him. So when we fall, let’s get back up again, be restored, and return to full fellowship (“peace”) with him.

On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you." When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you."
John 20:19-21 ESV translation

Living life from the center 
Life is meant to be lived from the Center, a divine Center. Each one of us can live such a life of amazing power and peace and serenity, of integration and confidence and simplified multiplicity, on one condition – that is, if we really want to. Do you want it enough? Do I want it enough?
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 
Philippians 4:6-7 RSV translation

Free from the dark 
Many children, of course, are quite afraid of the dark. And not without reason – bad things can happen in the dark! But as Christians, while we seek to rid the world and our lives of darkness, we know that Christ’s light is greater than our darkness. That allows us to live in peace and in freedom. We know that the power and grace of God can turn our stumbling blocks into stepping stones. We know that sin and death and darkness have been defeated – that Christ stands victorious and so do we. Let us strive to live free from all darkness and shadows, liberated by the light of the world.
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. 
John 1:5-9 ESV translation

Free to whisper
One area in which we all desperately long to be free is our relationship with God, being able to freely and confidently come before him. To be able to be ourselves, warts and all, before him, and not to feel that we need to hide in shame. Cardinal Hume puts it well as he talks about “being free enough to whisper into the ears of a compassionate God a story I never dared to tell.” Now that is freedom! Yes we’re sinful, and yes we ought to be repentant and seek God’s mercy and power to change. But may we also live in the perfect freedom and glorious liberty of the sons of God, as we speak to him of the story of our lives which we never dared to tell.
For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!" The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. 
Romans 8:14-16 RSV translation

Free to love 
If in your relationships with others you are very concerned for yourself, or if you are concerned that you might “lose out” or be taken advantage of, let me suggest that you best be mighty careful, and you best not give of yourself very generously. But please recognize that you are trapped; you are not free. In fact, as Methodist spiritual writer William Sangster notes, “Only the free can love, and only the completely free can love unreservedly.” I believe that the power of Christ’s resurrection, made manifest in our lives, is meant to free us to love others generously from the heart. It allows us “to soar with the lightness of true inner freedom” as we lose ourselves, and as we find God and others, in love.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." 
John 13:34-33 RSV translation

Free to ask 
Why not take some time today to ask God that he would expand your borders? That he might bless you with more opportunities to live for him, with more chances to bless others, with more “appointments to keep” (that is, God-orchestrated encounters). And remember, living his way is a part of the deal!  How about making this prayer your own?
Oh, that You would bless me indeed,
and enlarge my territory,
that Your hand would be with me
and that You would keep me from evil.

Jabez was more honorable than his brothers; and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, "Because I bore him in pain." Jabez called upon the God of Israel, saying, "Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that you would keep me from harm so that it might not bring me pain!" And God granted what he asked. 

1Chronicles 4:9-10 RSV translation

Finding God in all things 
I truly desire to have my life, in each aspect of it and in every aspect of it, to be given over to God as fully as possible. But my life is filled with so many different things and such a wide variety of thingssome more “spiritual” and some more “human”, some more “holy” and some more “mundane”. There are many keys in the spiritual life that unlock certain things for us. I was given a key a while back from a dear friend and brother who was writing about “finding God in all things”. I quickly found it a helpful expression of, and goal for, what I thought the Lord was looking for from me. Certainly my life would be more centred on him and on the life that is found in him if I could but find him a bit more in all the normal, human, mundane aspects of life.
Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath. These are a shadow of the things to come, but the substance belongs to Christ. 
Colossians 2:16-17 ESV translation

[Dave Quintana is an elder of the Servants of the Word, a missionary brotherhood of men living single for the Lord. He is also a regional coordinator for the Sword of the Spirit in Europe and the Middle East. He currently lives in London, England.]
Daily Meds from the Q Source
by Dave Quintana, published by Tabor House, 2012, 250 pages, $11.00

Dave Quintana's daily meditations and Bible readings to stir our minds and kindle our hearts in 2013. He explores themes important to all who search to be wise men and women in the Lord, and provides a wealth of personal experience from living and ministering in Central America, Asia, Europe, and the United States. Expect to be challenged. Expect to be inspired. Expect to meet the living and loving God. Order from Tabor House.

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