Walking Together on Our Journey to the Empty Tomb

by Pastor Pete Panitzke on March 16, 2020

COVID-19 news is changing constantly. I'll send you an update about that tomorrow, but today, I want to invite you to join me in a personal Journey to the Empty Tomb. 

Last Easter, I invited people to join me in what I called “The Fellowship of the Empty Tomb.” Every day I am on a quest to find the “empty tomb.” Every day as I read my Bible, I am constantly seeking assurance that Jesus’ tomb was empty on Easter morning because all the promises of God in the Bible depend on that one fact. 

A Time to Join the Fellowship of the Empty Tomb

Is this time of forced isolation and time at home an opportunity?

Attached is the Bible reading plan that I use. If you are not already reading the Bible every day, I invite you to join me on this plan. Every day I’ll send out links to the daily readings and a short devotional thought. As often as possible, we will also produce video devotionals. Click here to watch the video for today.  

Today’s lessons are Numbers 17-18 and Mark 14:22-42. Today my quest to find the empty tomb took me into the Garden of Gethsemane where I heard Jesus pray, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not my will, but yours be done.” What a wonderful prayer to hear in this day of uncertainty:

  • Abba Father – Jesus knew that he could speak to his dear Father in heaven about anything. Because of what Jesus did for us, we can too. Your Father is waiting to hear what is on your heart and mind.
  • “All things are possible for you.” Don’t pull any punches. Ask for the impossible. The eradication of coronavirus. The return to “normal” life. Health for you and all you love. Financial security.
  • “Take this cup from me.” It is ok to be concerned about the future. Jesus was. He knew what the future held and he sweat great drops of blood. His soul was overwhelmed with sorrow even to the point of death. Let’s ask the “impossible,” that our loving Father would take this COVID-19 cup of suffering from us.
  • “Yet not my will, but yours be done.” Father, you know better than us what is best. Give us childlike trust in your love, in your power, and in your wisdom. 

If you join me on the quest to find the empty tomb, email me with questions or comments or insights that you have about the daily Bible reading. “Social distancing” may make it impossible for us to meet, but it isn’t impossible for us to encourage each other.

If you are Lord of the Rings nerd like me, you know that the members of The Fellowship of the Ring encouraged each other over and over. That's what members of a fellowship do! Join me in The Fellowship of the Empty Tomb on a quest to find and share the “peace that surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4:7).

I'll "talk" with you tomorrow!

Pastor Pete 

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