Keep yourself moving forward with faith

The Easter season is a great time to be involved in church life. There is such excitement and energy in the church as we celebrate our living savior.

For those already active in the church we are still in the euphoria from the week-long festivities of Holy Week.

For those without a church home, no doubt you have thought about the meaning of Easter as reminders of this holiday are evident everywhere from Walmart to gas stations, and this is the time to receive the joy that comes from a risen savior.

It is a great time to be connected to church or get connected to church. One of the things I look forward to every year, and especially this year, are the Sundays between Easter Sunday (April 4) and Pentecost Sunday (May 23).

These Sundays are, for me, the pinnacle of sharing the good news of life in Christ. As a pastor, I love Easter Sunday as much as anybody with the flowers and the special music and the full pews. I really like the full pews.

But I have to remind you that Easter is a season, not just a day. I have found that during Holy Week, with Maundy Thursday and Good Friday and Easter Sunrise services the community of the faithful spends a lot of time looking back.

We remember the events of Jesus' last week before the crucifixion. We remember Jesus' meeting with the disciples for the last supper. We remember Jesus getting arrested.

We remember Jesus going through a sham trial and being beaten. We remember that Jesus was hung on a cross and there died to pay the price for our sins.

We remember that three days later, Jesus rose from the dead breaking the power of sin and death and giving the opportunity for eternal life to all who believe. And all of that is important, it is worth remembering.

The problem is that faith is not just about the past, it is even more so about the future. And these coming weeks of the Easter season are an opportunity for all of us to see the new life Christ is offering to each one of us.

As the flowers begin to bloom, as people come out of their winter safeholds, as spring noises fill the streets and country side, I invite you to think about what a new life, a fresh start could mean to you.

That is what is offered through Christ, a new beginning with opportunity and joy and hope for a bright future. As important as Holy Week is to the Christian tradition, it will never be more important than the new life offered to you daily through Jesus Christ.

This is the joy of serving a King who is indeed living, who is not in a tomb. If Jesus remained dead than our faith would all be about the past. His rising shows that our faith journeys are not about looking back, but looking ahead looking to new life.

I invite you to find a church in the coming weeks so that we can look ahead together.n

Rev. Brian Hauser is pastor for the Edenburg Presbyterian Church in Knox and Concord Presbyterian Church near West Freedom.