Dr. James Dobson is a celebrated psychologist, Christian leader, and founder and president of the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute (JDFI), which is dedicated to preserving the biblical institutions of marriage and family by encouraging, inspiring, supporting, and leading parents and children to build their lives on God's Word. In preparation for Easter, Dr. Dobson offers the following message of hope:
"We are living in surreal times - it is a moment in history when America and nations around the world have been shut down. Families are under restrictions to stay home, and many workplaces have closed their doors. People are frightened and concerned about what might happen next. Yet for Christians, there is great hope!
Over 2,000 years ago, God the Father sent His one and only Son to bear the sins of all mankind on the cruel cross of Calvary. The life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ transcends life's circumstances and represents a historical marker that lies at the center of everything we believe. During His earthly ministry, Jesus walked the roads of Galilee teaching a message of repentance and performing miracles. People were desperate just to touch the hem of His robe. They gathered in small and large groups to hear His words and with open arms, Jesus received young children, tax collectors, the infirmed, the curious and the criminal.
As Jesus' time to be tried and crucified approached, the disciples were fearful and confused. Was this really the purpose for which the Messiah had come? The future looked bleak and frightening.
Many of us are experiencing our own concerns today. We are facing a pandemic like nothing we have ever seen. While recent news reports are revealing a potential light at the end of the proverbial tunnel, there are still many questions about this disease that remain unanswered. Will we see family members or friends afflicted by the coronavirus? When will a sense of normalcy return to our lives?
While Jesus' mother and the disciples witnessed His brutal suffering on the cross, I can only imagine that they also experienced waves of fear and uncertainty. Yet beyond the darkness that veiled their skies, God was carrying out His plan of redemption. And three days later, light overcame darkness and hope conquered fear as Jesus rose from the dead! Fast forward to today, and God is still on His throne, weaving His redemptive threads through our lives. He loves you and has a plan for you.
This is the magnificence of Easter - the same hands that were pierced by our rebellion now reach out to us in compassion and forgiveness. God sent His Son to become one of us to do for us what we could not do for ourselves. Truly, we can say with the prophet Isaiah, "But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5).
To those of you who are overwhelmed by the cares of life right now and are burdened by the weight of the world during this season of uncertainty, I urge you to look to the risen Christ. He is our eternal hope! May His grace and peace surround you and your loved ones, not only on Easter Sunday but every day of the year."