We ran to the sunrise.

The faint trace of nautical sunlight carved the early horizon. As we left our outpost, we knew where we were running, but none of us knew what we would encounter once we arrived. Resurrection Sunday. “Easter.”

I was the slowest. The younger men led the pack. But I wasn’t ashamed, rather proud to be in such company with these men (and another slow runner in the bible)…in such a pursuit.

Almost 2000 years ago, on a similar morning, two young men set off on a foot race, not with each other but with expectation. The younger reached the tomb first…yet the elder ran straight into the tomb. They were looking for Jesus.

This is what we ran for as well…to find Jesus this resurrection morning.

02The sun met us at the end of our 2-mile run. We gathered around the makeshift altar on a peaceful beach at Manda Bay connected to the Indian Ocean off the coast of Kenya, perhaps similar to the beauty of the garden of the tomb mentioned in the Gospels.

We were sweaty, breathless, and alert. We found ourselves connected in disbelief or doubt to those two earliest disciples, Peter and John. They saw and didn’t know what to believe (John 20:9-10). Yet, Christ would later that day reveal his resurrected self to them…but only after first revealing himself to Mary Magdalene (John 20:11-18) and Mary, his mom (Matthew 28:1-10).

We, too, eagerly await his revealing; his promised return and creation’s reunion and resurrection (Revelation 21:1-5). Until that day, we find the power and hope of Christ’s resurrected body in the legacy of community that bears his name. As Christ’s body (1 Corinthians 12:27), Christians – “the church” – are the living witness until he arrives to conclude this age.

After the service, some walked, some ran the 2 miles back to our outpost. Along the way, I tried to imagine what Peter, John, Mary, and Jesus’ mom were thinking…feeling…as they walked back to Jerusalem to bring this news…

…and what they would experience as today continued…

Neither life, nor eternity, would ever be the same.

(Word of the Week 21-27MAR)  #WOTDseries #Drop15