In Mark’s resurrection story, it’s not, “Hey, Jesus is raised! That means there really is life after death!” No, it’s more like, “Jesus is raised and he wants you to go to Galilee to see him! Today! You will see him, just as he told you!” In other words, everything Jesus told you about God’s Kingdom is coming true right now. It’s happening today. And you’re in on it!

Same deal in Matthew. “He is risen from the dead! Awesome! That means we’re going to heaven!” No, it’s more like, “Go see him in Galilee today! He’s got work for you to do! When Jesus meets them there, they worship the risen King and he says, “All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Now, go! And surely I am with you every step of the way!”

Resurrection doesn’t mean escaping from the world someday when we die. It’s means ministering to the world today while we’re alive. Resurrection hope is a way to live and work for the sake of the world by the resurrection power of our Lord Jesus right now. We are the messengers now, we’re the deliverers of the Good News that the risen Messiah is the King of the whole world. We demonstrate that Good News by living resurrection lives. We call on others to receive it and respond to it for their own resurrection power and hope in Jesus.

“Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord. They will rest from their labor for their deeds will follow them.” ~Revelation 14:13

We are–each of us, all of us–commissioned by God’s resurrection power to live and work for the coming and everlasting Kingdom of God on earth. That’s Christ’s prayer and that’s our hope: that God’s will be finally and fully done on earth as it is in heaven. We’re not oiling the wheels of a giant machine that’s going to roll off the side of a cliff. We’re not restoring a masterpiece painting that’s ultimately going to be thrown into a fire. We’re not planting roses in a garden that’s destined to be dug up for a parking garage. You are accomplishing something every day that will be an important part of God’s eternal Kingdom forever.

Every act of love, gratitude, and kindness; every act of care and nurturing, of comfort and support; every prayer lifted; every lesson taught; every good deed that spreads the Good News; everything you do in the name and manner of our Lord Jesus becomes an important part of his Kingdom. We are given resurrection hope in order to share that hope with others. And everything we contribute to the cause–everything!–is used by God toward that great and ultimate end. Every cup of cold water given in his name; every snack packed for at-risk school kids; every check written for foreign missions; every meal served at Family Promise; every diaper changed at Young Lives; every kid mentored at Opportunity Tribe; every fist bumped at Emerson Elementary; every hospital and prison visit; every act of kindness toward an immigrant or refugee–all your work matters. Every minute is packed with heavenly potential. Every action is loaded with eternal consequences. What great hope!

Resurrection hope. Genuine hope for tomorrow. Living hope for today.