As I sit here eating my annual Paczki on this Saturday before Easter, I can’t help but contemplate how this might benefit my life. The delicious, blueberry filled, pastry was baked “fresh” this morning…so I cannot claim that the preservatives will somehow lengthen my lifespan like a 45 year old Twinkie. Though the sugar was sweet, and exploded with flavor on my tongue, the actual nutritional value will likely not last until lunch. On an up note…I can confirm that due to the delectable reaction of my tastebuds…my “self initiated Covid Taste Test”…came back negative. I could perhaps even argue that the fats added around my waist may help prevent me from freezing this next winter…or serve as a life preserver during the upcoming “lake season” of Minnesota.
Those who know me well, know that any extra buoyancy available to me while in the waters of Minnesota is of great personal value. I am not a strong swimmer…thus keeping floatation devices near is of great importance to me. In fact, I am often quick to ensure that there are lifejackets available on my watercraft, pool noodles on the dock, and I don’t stray too far away from the swim platform.
I am not the only one. The next time you head to a public pool and even some beaches, take a look around…you are likely to see flotation devices at the ready, in case any water emergencies may arise. I like to be safe…yet, I have begun to notice that our American culture seems to be obsessed with safety. We look to create and keep everything safe. We find safety checkpoints at airports, train stations, and courthouses. We have street signs telling us to use caution, slow down, watch for bumps…we not only have stop signs…but also stop ahead signs. Perhaps, we will soon have stop ahead, ahead signs. Need I talk about masks and social distancing?...I didn’t think so. It is like our world is being filled with life preservers.
Do I have an issue with it? I don’t know…that is my real issue. My real issue is…I think that most of the world is drowning in sin…and we have a Life Saver within reach…yet we continue to struggle in the water…until we die. I find it ironic that with all of our efforts to preserve life…we often miss the most significant Life Preserver. Mankind works hard to make our earthly lives last as long as possible…sometimes over 100 years, yet, reject the offering to preserve our lives for eternity.
May we come to take an honest look at Easter this year. May we come to take an honest look at Jesus Christ and make a decision to the question, is Jesus who He says He is? Is He God? Is He the Savior? Is He the way to eternal life? In John 8:12-59 Jesus gives an incredible testimony about who He is…and why He came. He claims to be God! Is He? That is the question that every person MUST answer! It doesn’t matter what I “think,” or what you “think.” What matters is the answer…Is He? He says He is…and I have come to believe it to be true.
I think John 8:24 wraps this proverbial picture well. Jesus said, “ I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am he, you will indeed die in your sins.” We are drowning in our sins…and the Life Saver is right there…inviting us to take it…to take Him!
I think this is the year…where we stop swimming…and hold on to the Life Saver!