Easter Reflections on Jesus' Resurrection Power
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On Easter Sunday, at age 10, I remember sitting in the church pew, filled with nervous excitement. The service was wrapping up, and the pastor was about to do an altar call. “Little Matty” was determined to walk up to the front of the church to make a public confession of faith for the first time. The timing wasn’t intentional—my decision fell into place on a Sunday that happened to be Easter.
Bible verses like Matthew Chapter 10, verse 32 must have inspired the sacred practice of altar calls:
So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven (ESV).
I learned Bible verses like this from faithful Sunday school teachers. Looking back on this Easter from many years ago, I can see that the seeds of God’s Word sown into my heart began to sprout that day thanks to the precious Sunday school teachers of my childhood.
I walked down the aisle and sat on the front pew, then told my pastor I wanted to accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior. When everyone finished singing, we stood up together and faced the crowd.
I don’t know how many people were at church that day—maybe a hundred faces were looking back at us. But one face stands out in my memory: my Sunday schoolteacher, Mrs. Bartmess.
While the pastor shared my exciting news, I could see Mrs. Bartmess sitting in the back, smiling brightly. She was the happiest person in the room—so excited to see one of her kids making a declaration of faith.
What makes her stand out so vividly in my memory is that on this Easter day, she did not look like the healthy, energetic Sunday School teacher I knew. Instead, I noticed Mrs. Bartmess sitting in a wheelchair with a wig covering her head. Unable to walk, she was in the final stages of bone cancer.
That Easter was the last time Mrs. Bartmess attended church. She died a week later.
For the first time in my youth, I saw the reality of mortality—our bodies are temporary.
I’m thankful that God’s Word promises us that death is not the ending and that we have eternal life through Christ Jesus. His resurrection power awaits you and me.
In John 11:25-26 we read,
Jesus said to her, 'I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this (ESV)?
Easter day approaches soon—a day most Christians agree to be the holiest of all days—a time to commemorate Christ’s resurrection from the dead and His promise of eternal life to those who believe in His divinity and surrender their life to Him.
As we celebrate Resurrection Sunday—also known as Easter—I’m filled with joy when I think about God’s promise of resurrection. All believers in Christ—including Mrs. Bartmess—will one day receive a brand-new resurrected body that is healthy, strong, and will never break down. No cancer, heart disease, or even a cold virus will exist!
But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself (Philippians 3:20-21 ESV).
This Easter, I’m grateful to God for placing a faithful servant like Mrs. Bartmess in my life. She taught my 4th grade friends and me that Easter is more than colored eggs and bunnies. Through her gifts, she shared the Bible and the incredible promises of God’s resurrection power in ways that reached young hearts.
If you are a Sunday school teacher, be encouraged—your efforts are making an eternal difference!
I’m looking forward to one day thanking Mrs. Bartmess for the example of godly faith she modeled for her Sunday school students.
And most of all, I’m grateful for the Lord’s resurrection power that will enable us to one day meet again to worship Him for eternity.
Scripture is quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. The ESV® text has been reproduced in cooperation with and by permission of Good News Publishers. Unauthorized reproduction of this publication is prohibited. All rights reserved.
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