There are days that stand out in history as days of significance. One of the most famous speeches of the 20th century, given by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, described one of those days: “Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.” Did that day make a difference? You had better believe it. Just ask the families of 417,000 Americans who lost their life as a result of the involvement of the United States in the war. A day can make a difference.
On Tuesday, January 10, 2010, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Léogâne, Haiti. That catastrophic quake struck the most populated area of the impoverished nation. No one is completely certain of the exact number of deaths, but estimates have ranged from 100,000 to 300,000 people. A day can make a difference.
Then of course there’s the document that begins, “IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776. The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America.” On that day, a new nation was formed. I have become particularly fond of that nation. Over the last 2 centuries, it is a nation that has stood for freedom and liberty and has been the envy of the world. A day can make a difference.
Other days come to mind. Every time you pick up your cell phone or turn on the radio in your car, remember December 12, 1901 when Marconi sent the first wireless radio transmission across the Atlantic. Whenever you see a jetliner descending out of the sky above your neighborhood to land at the busiest airport in the world, remember December 17, 1903 when the Wright Brothers made the first controlled, sustained flights in a power-driven airplane. Any time you walk into a public bathroom or drink out of a water fountain, remember May 17, 1954. On that day, The SCOTUS ruled in Brown v. Board of Education to end racial segregation. And any time you see a First Responder or member of the armed forces, remember September 11, 2011 when terrorists crash jetliners into the World Trade Center & the Pentagon.
The average person reading this will live to see 28,000 days. Of those days, most will be ordinary. Some will be extraordinary. Maybe there are some of those extraordinary days in your life that come to mind. Days like the birth of a child or the death of a spouse; the day she said “Yes” or the day he said “I do;” the day that you gave your heart to the Lord or the day of your baptism. We all have days that stand out from the ordinary. A day can make a difference.
This weekend, we celebrate the ONE day that has changed human history like no other day in the history of the universe. It has changed the course of human events greater than any battle ever fought, greater than any verdict ever reached, greater than any election, any natural disaster. The day that Jesus came forth from the grave has changed everything.
But has it changed you? Though the resurrection has altered the course of human history, the intent of Jesus’ resurrection is that individuals would be transformed. Through Jesus’ atoning death on the cross and his resurrection from the dead, Jesus has made a way for sinful humans, separated from God by the stench of their unrighteousness, to be restored to a right relationship with God. Resurrection Day IS the greatest day in human history, but it’s only great if you’ve allowed it to make an eternal difference in your life. A day can make a difference, if you’ll let it.
Because He Lives!