1 John 3:14
In one of the most sensitive moments of my life, I learned the glory and strength of Easter. My mother, a brave little Salvation Army warrior, went to be with the Lord early in April of 1946. I was still in the United States Navy, looking forward to discharge and returning to my calling as a Salvation Army officer.
A well-meaning comrade said to me, “Andrew, it must be very sad for you that your mother would have been promoted to Glory right at Easter time, just before your own return to service as an officer.” Then it was that I knew the reality of all the theology I had been taught about the meaning of Easter.
Her promotion to Glory helped me understand and unlock for myself the mystery, marvel, strength and compassion of the Savior’s willingness to die for me and to live again so that I could always understand the rich meaning of the resurrected Christ. I knew then, as I know now, that death does not conquer the Christian, but that through Christ, the Christian conquers death.
I knew then, as I know now, that we who love the Savior are born again, never to die, but to live eternally.
The glorious, practical message of Easter is not only that Christ Jesus came into the world and lived a perfect life and gave us precept and example, not only that the Master was willing to share His very life so that our sins might be forgiven, but an even greater message, that the Savior rose again. And because He rose, we, too, can live—not simply live out the days of our years, but live eternally with Him. Our souls, our spirits, will never die. This eternal message of Easter was implanted that day in my heart.
I wept as I bowed my head at that funeral service, but not as those without hope. I wept with joy that the lady I had called mother would always live and live forever by the tender mercies of a loving, heavenly Father who taught us this lesson by the sacrifice and resurrection of His Son for all mankind.
“But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead” (1 Corinthians 15:20). Jesus Christ rose! Jesus Christ lives! Because He lives, we too shall live, eternally! Hallelujah!
Andrew S. Miller, The War Cry