Looking for spiritual refreshment? God Pause email devotions are short, meaningful reflections on the following Sunday's lessons and gospel delivered directly to your email box. By Sunday, you'll be ready for an extra meaningful worship experience. 

Our devotion writers are Luther Seminary alumni. Their reflections are a gift to you and to the church.


Previous Day

Saturday, April 18, 2015

This joyful Eastertide,
away with sin and sorrow!
My love, the Crucified,
has sprung to life this morrow.

Had Christ, who once was slain,
not burst his three-day prison,
our faith had been in vain.
But now has Christ arisen,
arisen, arisen, arisen.

My flesh in hope shall rest
and for a season slumber
till trump from east to west
shall wake the dead in number.  Refrain

Death's flood has lost its chill
since Jesus crossed the river.
Lover of souls, from ill
my passing soul deliver.  Refrain

I live by a few rivers, the most well-known of which is the Columbia. We've harnessed its power and, as Woody Guthrie once sang its "power is turning our darkness to dawn; roll on Columbia roll on."

The Columbia's waters are quite chilly. The water that flows in the recreation area is the bottom water from upstream. It's beautiful, but when you're in the water you really know you're alive.

Therefore, I'm really drawn to the third verse here: "Death's flood has lost its chill since Jesus crossed the river." I hope to be thinking about something like that when my last moments of life occur: Christ has altered the nature of our move from death to eternal life. This reminds me of something Luther mused about, that our physical death is really a "little" death. The bigger one happened at the font.

Resurrected Christ, ease the chill of our daily death, and bring us to life. Amen.

James Aalgaard
Pastor, Grace Lutheran Church, Wenatchee, Wash.
Master of Divinity , 2000

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.