I want to know Christ-yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.
I think if you talk to anyone who loves God, you are going to hear them say that they would like to know Jesus, His Son, in a deeper way.
But when I read this verse, I was really struck with Paul’s description of “knowing Jesus.”
He didn’t want to know Jesus’ favorite color.
He didn’t want to know how Jesus felt when He was weary.
He didn’t want to know what it was like to be the Son of God or anything about what it was like to live in Heaven.
These are all things a journalist might ask Jesus in an interview.
But not Paul.
He wanted to go deep, deep, deep and KNOW Jesus all the way to knowing what it felt like to suffer like Jesus suffered, die like Jesus died, and be resurrected like Jesus was resurrected.
Last night, Tim and I took Olivia and a couple friends to the opening night of the final Harry Potter movie.
I wish I could explain all that we saw and heard in the lobby. People were dressed like every character imaginable. They knew the trivia question answers to the most detailed and difficult questions during the pre-movie trivia contest. They KNEW the Harry Potter series.
But it wasn’t until during the movie that I really saw an example of what it means to KNOW something.
Harry goes alone into a forest to meet Voldermort. Tension rises as he stands in the darkness surrounded by spooky trees, holding a ring as eerie music is being played. Out of the center of the ring, he lifts a stone called the “resurrection stone.” When he does, he is suddenly surrounded by his parents and several other characters from the series who have died in past movies. They have a beautiful conversation with him explaining that they have always been with him and they always will be. It reminded me so much of the “cloud of witnesses” from Hebrews.
On a very personal level, I pictured me standing in the woods surrounded by loved ones that I miss so much.
And so many friends.
Just as I was soaking in the thought of such a moment in my own life, Harry looked at his dad and asked, “Does it hurt? Does it hurt to die?”
The next few moments of the movie are so powerful. I won’t say more in case you are going to go see it. But, as the scene ends, Harry finds the strength he needs to fight Voldermort. He is willing to face whatever comes his way because he knows he is not alone.
He knows deeply the suffering of his family and the power of their resurrection.
Now I know that spiritually Harry Potter is not going to be our daily guide, but I do believe that there are moments in this series of movies where we can see glimpses of truth about God’s plan.
It felt right to see Harry surrounded by his loved ones who had gone before him, because Biblically we are told that this is the way it really is for us who walk by faith!
It felt right to hear the phrase “resurrection stone,” because we have one in our Christian faith, and His name is JESUS!!!!!!!!!!
I want to know this Resurrection Stone!!
I want us all to KNOW Him deeply, too, even when it means we are called to different levels of suffering, because I believe that in the end we will experience the power of his resurrection!!!
And don’t we all want to
KNOW THIS RESURRECTION POWER!!!???!!!!!???!!