THE STORY OF THE WORLD
A CAMPUS EASTER EXPERIENCE
Every human civilization throughout history has passed down stories from one generation to the next. Stories of heroes and villains. Stories of tragedy and stories of triumph. Stories of heartbreak and love. Parables. Fables. Some true and some not.
Why do we yearn for great adventures – not just in stories – but in life? And yet, in all our longings for adventure, we find the simple and strong desire to somehow get back home. A home that we may never have known, a home older than our birth. Could it be the great adventure we seek is just that — the journey back home?
What if the story of the bible is the great, huge story we long for? What if there were a hero who has defeated the villain? What if we’ve been given an amazing part to play in this story? What if this story wasn’t just a fairy’s tale? What if it were the true story of you, of us, of the whole world?
In the beginning He was. He was God from the very beginning. He was there when everything was created. Without Him none of this, or us, or any of it would be here. God thought all this up. Like an author, words left His mind and then planets and stars and oceans and mountains and lions and flowers sprang into existence. Like every great artist He was proud of his work, he knew it was good. But He still had to place the most beautiful jewel on His crowning achievement…us! People!
The Great Creator made little creators, just like Himself: artists and bankers and nurses and farmers…all with the Earth as our beautiful playground. We were made to dream and experiment and build just like our Creator. When He made us, it revealed that He was more than just a proud artist, but a Loving Father. And our great Father gave us something truly incredible, the very best gift of all, a relationship with Him, filled with perfect, steadfast, and unending love.
Everything was perfect… for a while. Then one day everything went horribly wrong. Evil himself whispered into our ear. He convinced us that we didn’t have to just be like God… we could be gods ourselves! We could be powerful and wealthy and beautiful on our own! So we chose to leave home, to walk away from the One who truly loved us.
It’s a tricky thing, true love. There’s always an open door. In any loving relationship you are free to enter and stay, but you’re also free to leave. It’s a choice, not a trap. So God let us walk away…He didn’t stop us. He didn’t want a lifeless robotic relationship, He wanted the real thing.
But when we walked away from the source of life and beauty and goodness, we lost it all. What was once whole became broken. What was once filled with light became totally dark. What was once abounding in life became riddled with death. We thought we were gaining power, but we found ourselves helpless. We thought we were getting freedom, but we found ourselves in chains.
LONGING & PROMISE
Even though we’d lost everything good and beautiful, something remained. A faint memory of what life was supposed to be like lingered in our hearts. The sensation was almost haunting…like a song we used to know, but we couldn’t remember the melody. We ached for home, for our Father.
The hole in our heart, that emptiness, couldn’t be filled. That chasm couldn’t be bridged by our own strength. The symptoms of that first rejection ran too deep, like an infection at the core of our soul. We ran to empty things to fill our emptiness, but in the wake, all that was left was a deeper longing than before.
But God handed down a promise to us through his chosen storytellers: he wouldn’t abandon us. He’d send us a hero. Whatever the cost, he’d bring us home.
Then, when no one expected it, a new character appeared. A Man who came from nowhere important. A Man without status or wealth walked into the story. A man named Jesus. But He didn’t act like a man with nothing to His name, He acted like a man with power and authority. He leapt onto the stage and proclaimed, “I was the one there in the beginning. I’m the hero who was promised long ago. A new kingdom is here, My Kingdom. Evil’s rule over my world will come to an end. Follow Me! I am the Way back to the Father’s arms!”
But the elite and the prejudiced didn’t like that He was disturbing their little piece of power and status. Evil whispered into their ears and convinced them to put an end to him. So they nailed him to a cross. A shameful and torturous ending. An ending fit for a villain, not a hero…
But it wasn’t the end. Not by a long shot. You see three days later, when His friends came to pay their respects, an unexpected miracle appeared before their eyes! The Hero’s grave was empty! The only thing left there was His tattered grave clothes!
“What’s everyone so worked up about?” He asked them. They all turned around, a little scared and quite surprised. “Don’t be afraid! This isn’t The End, it is just the beginning! I’ve undone Evil’s curse. I’ve conquered the darkness with light. I’ve laid death in its grave. Don’t you know I love you? I told you I’d bring you home, whatever the cost!”
Then it was time to return, the hero’s throne of Heaven awaited him. But before he left, he gave us one last mission: Live in my Kingdom, and I’ll renew you to the work of art you were made to be. Invite others into this life of restoration and beauty. By my spirit, I’ll always be with you. My spirit will make a home in your heart and teach you this new Way.
Don’t worry, I promise I’ll be back to fully restore my beautiful world. I’ll finish what I started. And remember, I’m faithful. I keep all of my promises. On that final day, all the bad things will come undone. No more tears, no more pain, no more death. We’ll be together again… just like we were in the beginning.
SHARE YOUR STORY
This isn’t just a story to hear and enjoy. It’s a story to live and experience. A story that can transform you. A story to give you new, full life. The true story.
Though we are broken creatures who have turned our back on the author of our story, his immeasurable love for us calls us back home. Evil’s curse has been undone. Sin has been defeated. Death has forever been laid in its grave. And now we have the opportunity to return home thanks to Jesus, our Hero.
The story of you isn’t over. You have the opportunity to claim the role that was written for you from the very beginning. Want to share how God is at work in your story? Share it below, we’d love to hear from you.
GET PLUGGED IN!
Want to know more about how you can get involved at CSF? We’d love to buy you coffee, or help you get plugged into a small group, or just have a chance to sit down and talk with you.