On his journey, as he was nearing Damascus, a light from the sky suddenly flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” He said, “Who are you, sir?” The reply came, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. Now get up and go into the city and you will be told what you must do. The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, for they heard the voice but could see no one. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing;so they led him by the hand and brought him to Damascus. For three days he was unable to see, and he neither ate nor drank. Acts 9:3-9
While in prayer the other day I remembered an old friend. We worked together for several years and shared an office. My friend was an atheists and a struggling alcoholic. In one of several attempts to overcome his alcohol addiction, he placed a 3X5 card on our shared bulletin board with the words, “That was Yesterday.”
Those three words have stayed with me for close to 40 years. Since then, I have posted them in every office I have worked in. Like my friend, we all have skeletons in our closet, sins we are ashamed of, and people we have hurt.
There is the young man who hurt his back on the job. The pain meds helped until the prescription ran out. Then, somehow he got hooked on Heroin. That was yesterday.
Or the woman that had an abortion at 16, and has suffered not only the mental and physical pain, but the sorrow and shame she feels continuously. That was yesterday.
What about the husband and father of four, who cheated on his wife and has alienated both a loving spouse and his own children. That was yesterday.
Then, there is the college student who has immersed himself in pornography since he left his parent’s home for school, to the point of addiction. That was yesterday.
Or the high school girl who has constantly made fun of a fellow student with a weight problem, teasing her and bullying her to the point of suicide. That was yesterday.
I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us. –Romans 8:18
The pain they all feel must be similar to the pain our Lord suffered on the cross, and the pain his mother and apostles felt watching him die a terrible death.
But the story didn’t end there. That was Friday, and three days later on that first Easter morning, Christ rose from the dead. The apostles fears were allayed, their sins, like ours, forgiven; taken to the cross by our Savior.
If Jesus had not risen from the dead, our faith would have no meaning, and our sins would still be with us.
My friend found sobriety and became a Catholic on an Easter Sunday over 30 years ago. He turned his life around, a metanoia. He quit drinking, found Jesus, and with it sobriety, forgiveness and salvation. We lost him several years ago, but his remaining years were his happiest.
And, the people I mentioned can do it too!
Today is Easter Sunday, the day of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. He died for our sins, all of them. No sin is too big or to terrible that it can’t be forgiven. He sacrificed once, for all.
On this Easter Sunday, why not consider committing your life to Christ. Put behind your yesterdays, reach out for the forgiveness and salvation that Jesus offers today, and enjoy the new life you will find tomorrow.
Today, Easter Sunday, is the perfect first day of the rest of your life. You can do it, you too can say, “That was Yesterday.”
God bless you my friends. Have a happy and blessed Easter!
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