From Now Until Forever

Willow Creek | April 1, 2021

In giving the Easter message this past weekend, Pastor Dave Dummitt said, “God doesn’t meet us with condemnation and shame; God runs to meet us. God not only has the ability to put your life back together; He desires to put your life back together.” No matter how fractured you think your life may be, God is ready to meet you and restore you. All you have to do is let Him.


Easter is about salvation, and you might be carrying a lot this season: addiction, brokenness, loneliness, hopelessness. However, Jesus says, “Come. Take everything you’re carrying, and place it at the feet of My cross. I paid for this so you don’t have to.” Let this be the time you finally leave everything at the cross and let Jesus into your heart. 


For many, John 3:16 is the verse of Easter: “For God so loved the world, He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” The verse doesn’t say, “whoever is holy, upright, sober, pure, or good” will have eternal life; it simply says “whoever.” That includes all of us. 


“But you don’t understand,” you might be thinking. “I’m a thief. A cheater. An addict. A bad parent. A terrible spouse. How could Jesus be for me?” But that’s where the beauty of Easter shines: you don’t have to be perfect or have it all together; Jesus lived a perfect life so we don’t have to. Jesus took all of our sins, all of our mistakes, and all of our pains on the cross with Him. He died for us as the ultimate sacrifice. Because He did, we don’t need to walk around in guilt or shame anymore! We can walk around reborn and restored. All we need to do is believe in Him and seek His forgiveness.


“I’ve lived a terrible life,” you might say. “I’ll just never be good enough.” Jesus made you good enough when He spread His arms out on the cross. His love is amazing and gracious and abounding in mercy. Don’t let your past mistakes or pride stop you from spending eternity with Him.


A lesser known but just as powerful verse, John 3:17, says, “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” Jesus didn’t come to wag His finger in your face and say, “Wow. You’ve really screwed up.” No. Jesus came to rescue you, me–everyone–from our sins. He came so we can have eternal life. 


Maybe you’ve been thinking about it. Maybe this past weekend’s message or worship spoke to you. Let me just say this: Don’t put it off any longer. There is a peace and love you’ll find in Jesus that you’ll never find in this world. There is salvation to be had; all you have to do is say “yes” to Him.


“Jesus, yes. I want You to be king of my heart. I want Your forgiveness and love. Thank You for dying for me, for my sins, for taking my penalty. Please restore my heart and help me to know You more. Amen.”


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