An Unexpected Easter Conversation

Last week, a friend and I discussed life and death and heaven. I didn’t handle it very well.

“I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately,” she said. “I’m not sure if I believe in life after death.”

“You mean, you don’t believe in heaven?”

“It’s just not logical.”

She’d memorized a lot of Scripture as a child. She knew about the cross and the Easter story. 

“What about the miracle of birth?” I said. “Is that hard for you to believe?”

“And what about creation?” I said. “Nature? Animals? God created ‘the birds of the air and the fish of the sea’?”

“Yeah, all of that makes sense to me.”

“You mean, scientifically?” I said. “Under a microscope?”

“Yes. We can prove it. But we don’t have any proof of heaven.”

“What about this thought? Life has to start somewhere, right? Do you believe God is our Creator?”

“Yes. But think about it. We die. We’re buried. That has to be the end. How can we come back to life again? There’s no logic to that.”

We talked a while longer–until I got an uncomfortable feeling in my chest.

I’m pushing too hard. 

It’s not my job to change her mind.

After our Easter conversation, a gentle thought came.

She’s right. 

It’s not logical.

It doesn’t make sense.

I should’ve agreed with her.

Death DOES look like the end. It looked like the end–even to Mary and the disciples. 

Almost nothing Jesus did made sense. 

He fed 5,000+ with a little boy’s lunch.

He walked on water and turned water into wine.

He washed His disciples’ feet.

I’d tried to convince my friend–

But faith goes beyond logic.

It can’t be explained.

*The same Power that raised Jesus from the dead comes alive in hearts. That’s faith! (click to tweet)

*Because He arose, death was arrested. We will rise again! (click to tweet)

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in Me, though he die, yet shall he live…” John 11:25  (click to tweet)

Turn your speakers on high and listen to this song. It’s what Easter is all about.

If you can’t see the video, click here.

Thoughts? Questions? Want to comment and start a conversation?

Love,

Julie

 

Comments

  1. sandy Coffey says:

    It is somehow a puzzlement but I think of all the wonderful creations around me. Prayers are answered and things we need come at times we least expect it. Even if it is a spirit there is something there. After all I truly believe that my mom sends us dimes all the time from heaven. We find them all the time in the strangest places. Yes, even at our feet when there was no way it could have gotten there. Christ the Lord has Risen today. Listen to the words and listen to your heart.

    • Julie Gilleand says:

      Hi Sandy,

      I thought it was neat that you find dimes that you believe your mom sends from heaven. I wondered if your mom collected dimes. I ask because my mom did. She always hoped to get dimes back in change so she could add it to her collection. I always thought it was dumb, but after she died I found a little baggie full of her dimes when I was going through her things. I won’t spend them. They make me think of her. Blessings to you.

      Julie (Leafy) Gilleand

      • Love it when thoughts and hearts connect on the blog. And Leafy, you found your mother’s dimes.

        Ohhhhh, wow. Bet you’ll save them forever.

  2. Hey, Sandy. What beautiful words.

    I’m whispering what you said…”Christ the Lord has Risen today.”

    Thank you! And thanks for being the first one to comment. Comments always, always make me smile. So grateful to God for stirring this Easter Conversation post in my heart!

    xo

    • Nanc Lusignan says:

      Love the song! Love the message! Spot on and yes, perfect timing! I always tell people over and over, there are “No coincidences.” Love from here!

  3. It doesn’t make sense but would I want to serve a God that made total sense? I need a God of wonder….of the miraculous….. the beginning and not the end. I need my God to be so much greater and bigger than me…..so I can have hope that anything I can’t do my God can! Because I have the hope of heaven I can face today and tomorrow after losing my husband and my mom and dad and other loved ones. I think I would choose to have this hope no matter whether it were true or not…..but it is true! Because He lives I can face tomorrow! Thank you God for the hope of eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord!

    • Rhonda, that’s beautiful. “Why would I want to serve a God who made total sense?” Love how you think!

      Me too.

      Oh, Rhonda….I’m hugging you from here. We’re going to see our people again one day!

      xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  4. Anna Haney says:

    Wow. I am stunned by your friend’s reaction. When I hear scientists touting logic and coincidence for stuff, I remember facts like the way there is a strand of silk in each ear of corn that matches the number of kernels. I think of the donkey who has a mane that makes a cross on its back. I watch an episode of BBC’s Planet Earth and see God in all of those animals. Life after death, knowing my loved ones are already with Him is what gives me hope.
    Happy Easter.
    Love you, Anna

  5. Marge Hill says:

    Great blog, Julie. Hope you and your family have a wonderful Easter!

  6. Patricia Martin says:

    Oh Julie! I know how you feel! My mom and dad are the only Christians in their respective families and most of our family members do not understand the real meaning of holidays like Easter. Seeing your beautiful Easter table reminded me of a time your heart was resurrected to life. When you lost Robbie, your heart died for a while, but when your mom-in law and God where there loving you, your heart was resurrected to life and you were blessed with Thomas! Happy Easter dear Julie!

    • Patricia.

      Oh, Patricia.

      My heart is so full…..how I can I respond to such beautiful thoughts. They’re nestled down in my heart.

      What you said means so much. Saying a prayer right now for your extended family members. It’s not something we can force, is it? Faith turns everything we think we understand–LOGIC–inside out and round about.

      Thank you for being you.

  7. Julie, thank you for this post. I was reminded that it’s all really a miracle. Each new day is a new chance at resurrection. Easter is really natural and it’s death that is unnatural. We were never meant to age slowly and die, that is not what God created for us in the beginning. Jesus restores us to our natural state of living forever with Him. I will pray for your friend. I know so many who are where she is. It’s all so hard to believe sometimes and yet we have all the evidence right in front of us. Happy Easter! Lori

    • I love your thoughts, Lori. You’re so right. EACH new day is a miracle! A new chance at resurrection!

      Thank you so much for reading–and sharing your heart.

      Love,
      Julie

  8. Melinda Franklin says:

    I believe! Another fabulous blog post, Julie. Happy Easter friend.

  9. Oh, you wanted to help that person sooo much. But we can only bring a horse to water…we can’t make them drink. (Sorry for the cliché.)

    YOU: We talked a while longer–until I got an uncomfortable feeling in my chest.
    I’m pushing too hard.
    It’s not my job to change her mind.

    ME: In your earnestness to help her to see the light you shared your feelings. Nothing wrong with that. Maybe next time you’ll do it differently…maybe not. But it doesn’t matter. It’s you. Your faith wanting to be shared. Again, nothing wrong with that. But you nailed it when you said it wasn’t your job to change her mind. Release and let go. You did all that God wanted you to do.

    Hugs!

    • Yes, yes, yes, everything you said. I knew in my spirit, I had to let go. Again…which seems to be my life’s theme. 🙂

      Love you so much, B.J.

      And Happy Almost Easter.

  10. Cathy Mayfield says:

    When the chills stop chasing up and down my arms, I’ll tell you a story…

    For over ten years, our family has participated in a local Christian theater’s productions of original passion plays. Most years, one or more of our daughters have acted, sang, danced, directed, choreographed, and even written the scripts, not to mention the helping behind the scenes with costumes, sets, etc. This year, our youngest daughter, Faith, choreographed the whole production, as well as danced as one of the featured dancers.

    I have watched many of these and find some aspect in each which touches my soul, such as the year a father and son we knew well played God the Father and Jesus the Son. Imagine watching a father turning his back on his son while he was crucified…imagine The Father turning His back on His Only Begotten Son while He bled and died for us!! Ooo…there go the chills again!

    The first regular performance I watched of this year’s held yet another unique experience for me. This year, the story takes place in today’s world, with an angel relating the story of Jesus’ birth, ministry, death, and resurrection to a troubled, bullied, suicidal teen. After the crucifixion, the young girl agonizes over Jesus leaving “her” like that. Satan and his demons surround her and try to talk her into giving up, while at the back of the stage, we see the stone covering the grave. A struggle ensues and finally, as it seems Satan will win, three things happen simultaneously: the teen yells, “JESUS!” – a huge burst of light and sound effects blasts – and the stone rolls away from the grave as though shoved mightily!!!

    Believe me, I know the story…I’ve seen the stone roll away many times. I’ve cried out for Jesus many times.

    But one fact slammed into my consciousness at that show: At the EXACT MOMENT we cry out the name of JESUS…HE’s THERE!! ALIVE!!

    Chills again…

    Blessed Easter to you all!

    • Chills–your chills became my chills, Cathy. Holy goosebumps is what I call them.

      Thank you. I saw your story unfolding as I read it. So very powerful, my friend.

      HE’S ALIVE! Jesus! Jesus!

      Thank you, my friend.

  11. The upside down kingdom of God…praying for your friend to take the leap of faith required to believe…the movie A Case For Christ really addresses this in a Scientific sort of way 🙂 xo

    • Will go to see it, Robin! Anytime you recommend something, I always listen.

      Love you. Always. Thank you. For everything.

  12. Marcia B says:

    As always, your post has spoken to my heart. Grace cannot be explained to anyone. Only God can make it make sense. And, when His grace is experienced, you know that you know that this world is not home–Heaven is. May the Lord continue to bless your writing. I know my life is exhorted through your writings.

    • Ohhhhh, Marcia….

      My heart is so full right now. Thank you. And I’m sending the praise to Our Father. He’s the One who stirs me to write.

      You blessed me so deeply–inspires me to keep listening for His Still Small Voice.

      So much love,
      Julie

  13. Shelley Elaine says:

    Oh, Julie, I know! I have been in almost the same situation of trying to convince a friend of what my heart believes…many times I have had to quietly repeat to myself, “I am not her Holy Spirit” Lol. And, for me, nothing testifies of Him more beautifully than the miracle of new life, and of nature. I tell my teenage Bible Study class that every spring I like to scoop up a couple of tadpoles just to watch them transform. It makes me feel like I do when I stand on the shore and look out at the ocean. Awestruck. Unbelievable. Undeniable. “The same Power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in me”. Thank you Julie for reminding me to stand still and know that He is God as I rejoice in His creation. Happy Easter Sweet Friend!

    • Shelley, our hearts are connected! I feel the same way about nature. Sometimes it just blows me away–the splendor of it all. And Someone a lot smarter than me had to set the world in motion.

      Thank you for commenting. I’m sitting here nodding my head and “amenning.” (spelling?)

      Much love to you and yours~

  14. Beautiful, Julie. You are so right … and so was your friend … it makes absolutely no sense …. Praise God for that! If it made complete sense, we’d be … not human, that’s for sure. 🙂 I’m so thankful that His ways are not our ways. <3

    • Agreeing with everything you said, Shelli. Hope you and your family have a beautiful Easter!

      Much love~~
      Julie

  15. Julie, I think you did exactly what He needed you to do in those moments for your friend- really beautifully. Speak, witness, and even just listen to your friend. But how do we put into words those parts that perhaps haven’t been revealed to us yet? Isn’t that part of the longing?

    When my Momma was minutes away from leaving her earthly home, her older sister, my brother, and I were standing around the bed, as we had for days. But her breathing had slowed, and the signs they told us to watch for had come. And so my Auntie said to my mom, “Mary, it’s time for you to go! We’re all here. We’ve all said everything to you. We all love you. You can go…” And slowly my mom who hadn’t talked in days, or moved, or shown any signs that she was there… started to smile. And my faith-filled Aunt said “Mary, you see the pearly gates, don’t you” Then go! And mom, literally grinned, her eyes moved under her closed lids- but she looked excited for about 10 seconds- we all saw it.” And then she left. We called for the nurse who confirmed she had just passed. Whatever it was that she saw, and whatever it took for her to leave precisely at that time- I want that too! I believe- oh how I believe! Thank you for sharing with us! Happy Easter! So much love to you!

    • Vicky, Vicky….oh, Vicky….

      Thank you. Praising tears are coming now. And I’m praying your comment goes far and wide, and that it speaks to readers as “deep unto deep.”

      Hallelujah~~

      Glory~~

      Happy Easter, my precious friend.

  16. Julie Gilleand says:

    Hi Julie, I hope you and your family had a blessed Easter. It’s hard not being able to convince somebody of what you know is true, especially when it is a matter of spiritual life and death. I have never been able to see someone I’ve witnessed to about Jesus, give their heart to Him. I’ve only been on the seed-planting, watering end of things. How wonderful it would be to see a positive outcome, just once. But as for your friend’s doubts, like several others have said here — who wants a God who makes sense? I mean at first that sounds great, but if He made sense to our small minds (in comparison to His), He would be no greater than us. I LOVE when something happens that can only be God because nothing else makes sense. To me that is the adventure of a lifetime. There are miracles all around us that show Him to us. I wouldn’t want it any other way. I pray your friend will one day open her heart to the unexplainable, wondrous and amazing God who loves her.

    I can’t imagine a life not filled with those special miraculous moments that remind me that God loves me is interested in my life. When you feel like sometimes He’s so far away, or you from Him, and sometimes even feel as if He doesn’t care, what a gift when one of those Godwinks drops into your day to prove you wrong!

    Thanks for sharing this Julie and blessings on your week ♥

    Leafy 🙂

    • Everything you said is so good, Julie. I’m sitting here nodding. Yes, yes, yes.

      Hope His Spirit hovered close to you during Easter weekend. I bet it was a different kind of Easter for you.

      You’re right. We couldn’t bow to a God who made sense to us–always, in every way.

      So much love to you,
      Other Julie

  17. Hah! How true. I know how frustrating that is. I decided to just stop pushing it and say it all boils down to faith really. I think you handled it well.

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