Once dead, not always dead.

There was a marriage once proclaimed dead but against all odds, it came back to life. The couple found reconciliation and even came out stronger, forgiving each other, owning their parts, acknowledging their weaknesses. The wife was near death more than once but she lived and is a beloved grandmother and mother. The husband was dead in his own sin but he was raised to life through forgiveness and faith which resulted in him living life abundantly.

This couple has seen a lot over the last fifty plus years of marriage. They face new challenges every day but one thing that does not waiver is their faith and hope in the eternal. The husband in this marriage has been known to say for many years “keep the faith eh!”, reminiscent of 2 Timothy 4:7.

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

On top of all of it all, this couple has built a legacy in shepherding Christ-following relationships in their children, grandchildren and in discipling relationships.

I for one am a great benefactor of this legacy as the husband and wife in this story are my parents and the day this post was published on their wedding anniversary. The lessons taught and observed in them being humble, putting others first, thinking before speaking, loving others, turning the other cheek, giving, serving, forgiving, and listening resonate with me daily. In these teachings I have become equipped to lead myself, my family, in the workplace and in organizations where I serve. Ultimately their love and sacrifice has equipped me to live fearlessly with eternity in mind and so for that I am grateful beyond words.

Similar to what I’ve seen through my own family, in Acts 9:26-43 we find two “no way!” stories, once dead, now alive.

The believers meet Saul after his conversion but before understanding his major change of heart. This is the guy who set out to punish and kill the believers, yet now is following as they are, and speaking boldly as a proponent of Jesus and the resurrection. He was once dead in his pride and then became more alive than ever after his transformation. He was once the self-proclaimed foremost of sinners and went on to become the foremost in preaching and teaching the Gospel. Saul (Paul) was responsible for writing much of what we know today as The New Testament.

We also learn of a believer named Tabitha who became ill, died, and was washed for burial. People had surrounded her weeping and mourning over the loss. She was dead, no doubt about it. Then Peter arrives at the scene, sends everyone away, and begins to pray. I’m thinking “Why pray now, she’s dead?”… But God.

Peter speaks to Tabitha, telling her to get up, then she opens her eyes and sat up. Dead then alive!

If God can raise the dead, transform my parent’s marriage, guide them through illnesses, transform their hearts and save a sinner like me, there is nothing he cannot do. This resurrecting power is not a magic trick, you can’t buy it, and you cannot even earn it because it is freely given when we choose to put our faith, hope, trust and our life in Jesus.

Why not take one simple step in trusting him today whether for the first time or trusting him more than ever? Start with one area such as your finances, career, marriage, illness, or a broken relationship. If you open your heart and let him work, you will see what might seem dead now come to life eternal.